There is a constant war being fought between goldbugs, like Peter Schiff, and Bitcoin enthusiasts so I decided to make an outline, with links, comparing and contrasting gold and Bitcoin. I made this in November of 2019 (thus the information therein is based on figures from that time) but, being scatter brained, neglected to post this for the Bitcoin community to see. The yardsticks I used to compare the two assets included the following: shipping/transactions costs, storage costs, censorship factor, settlement time, stock to flow, blockchain vs clearing house, validation, etc. I will also touch on Roosevelt's gold confiscation executive order in 1933, transporting gold during the Spanish Civil War in 1936, and the hypothetical cost for Venezuela to repatriate its gold more recently. I will provide a brief summary first then follow that with the outline I made. This information can be used as a tool for the Bitcoin community to combat some of the silly rhetoric coming from goldbugs such as Peter Schiff and James Rickards. I would like to make it clear, however, that I am not against gold and think that it performed its role as money very well in a technologically inferior era, namely Victorian times but I think Bitcoin performs the functions of money better than gold does in the current environment. I have been looking to make a contribution to the Bitcoin community and I hope this is a useful and educational tool for everyone who reads this. Summary: Shipping/transaction costs: 100 ounces of gold could be shipped for 315 dollars; the comparable dollar value in Bitcoin could be sent for 35 dollars using a non-segwit address. Using historical precendent, it would cost an estimated $32,997,989 to transport $1 billion in gold using the 3.3% fee that the Soviets charged the Spaniards in 1936; a $1 billion Bitcoin transaction moved for $690 last year by comparison. Please note that the only historic example we can provide for moving enormous sums of gold was when the government of Spain transported gold to Moscow during the Spanish Civil War in 1936. More information on this topic will be found in the notes section. Storage costs: 100 ounces of gold would require $451 per year to custody while the equivalent value of Bitcoin in dollar terms could be stored for the cost of a Ledger Nano S, $59.99. $1 billion USD value of gold would cost $2,900,000 per year while an Armory set up that is more secure would run you the cost of a laptop, $200-300. Censorship factor: Gold must pass through a 3rd party whenever it is shipped, whether for a transaction or for personal transportation. Gold will typically have to be declared and a customs duty may be imposed when crossing international borders. The key take-away is gatekeepers (customs) can halt movement of gold thus making transactions difficult. $46,000 of gold was seized in India despite the smugglers hiding it in their rectums. Settlement time: Shipping gold based on 100 ounces takes anywhere from 3-10 days while Bitcoin transactions clear in roughly 10 minutes depending on network congestion and fee size. Historic confiscation: Franklin Roosevelt confiscated and debased the paper value of gold in 1933 with Executive Order 6102. Since gold is physical in nature and value dense, it is often stored in custodial vaults like banks and so forth which act as a honeypot for rapacious governments. Stock to flow: Plan B's stock to flow model has become a favorite on twitter. Stock to flow measures the relationship between the total stock of an asset against the amount that is produced in a given year. Currently gold still has the highest value at 62 while Bitcoin sits at 50 in 2nd place. Bitcoin will overtake gold in 2024 after the next halving. Blockchain vs clearing house: gold payments historically passed through a 3rd party (clearinghouse) in order to be validated while Bitcoin transactions can be self validated through the use of a node. Key Takeaway from above- Bitcoin is vastly superior to gold in terms of cost, speed, and censorship resistance. One could theoretically carry around an enormous sum of Bitcoin on a cold card while the equivalent dollar value of gold would require a wheelbarrow...and create an enormous target on the back of the transporter. With the exception of the stock to flow ratio (which will flip in Bitcoin's favor soon), Bitcoin is superior to gold by all metrics covered. Notes: Shipping/transaction costs Gold 100 oz = 155,500. 45 x 7 = $315 to ship 100 oz gold. https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/839735-katchum/2547831-how-much-does-it-cost-to-ship-silver-and-gold https://www.coininvest.com/en/shipping-prices/ 211 tonnes Venezuela; 3.3% of $10.5 billion = 346,478,880 or 32,997,989/billion usd http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2011/08/23/how-to-get-12-billion-of-gold-to-venezuela/ (counter party risk; maduro; quotes from article) Bitcoin 18 bitcoin equivalent value; 35 USD with legacy address https://blockexplorer.com/ https://bitcoinfees.info/ 1 billion; $690 dollars https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2019/09/someone-moved-1-billion-in-a-single-bitcoin-transaction/ Storage costs Gold .29% annually; https://sdbullion.com/gold-silver-storage 100 oz – $451/year $1 billion USD value – $2,900,000/year Bitcoin Ledger Nano S - $59.00 (for less bitcoin) https://shop.ledger.com/products/ledger-nano-s/transparent?flow_country=USA&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI3ILV5O-Z5wIVTtbACh1zTAwqEAQYASABEgJ5SPD_BwE Armory - $200-300 cost of laptop for setup https://www.bitcoinarmory.com/ Censorship factor (must pass through 3rd party) Varies by country Gold will typically have to be declared and a customs duty may be imposed Key take-away is gatekeepers (customs) can halt movement of gold thus making transactions difficult $46,000 seized in India https://www.foxnews.com/travel/indian-airport-stops-29-passengers-smuggling-gold-in-their-rectums Settlement time Gold For 100 oz transaction by USPS 3-10 days (must pass through 3rd party) Bitcoin Roughly 10 minutes to be included in next block Historic confiscation-roosevelt 1933 Executive Order 6102 (forced spending, fed could ban cash, go through and get quotes) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Order_6102 “The stated reason for the order was that hard times had caused "hoarding" of gold, stalling economic growth and making the depression worse” Stock to flow; https://medium.com/@100trillionUSD/modeling-bitcoins-value-with-scarcity-91fa0fc03e25 (explain what it is and use charts in article) Gold; SF of 62 Bitcoin; SF of 25 but will double to 50 after May (and to 100 in four years) Blockchain vs clearing house Transactions can be validated by running a full node vs. third party settlement Validation Gold; https://www.goldismoney2.com/threads/cost-to-assay.6732/ (Read some responses) Bitcoin Cost of electricity to run a full node Breaking down Venezuela conundrum; http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2011/08/23/how-to-get-12-billion-of-gold-to-venezuela/ “The last (and only) known case of this kind of quantity of gold being transported across state lines took place almost exactly 75 years ago, in 1936, when the government of Spain removed 560 tons of gold from Madrid to Moscow as the armies of Francisco Franco approached. Most of the gold was exchanged for Russian weaponry, with the Soviet Union keeping 2.1% of the funds in the form of commissions and brokerage, and an additional 1.2% in the form of transport, deposit, melting, and refining expenses.” “Venezuela would need to transport the gold in several trips, traders said, since the high value of gold means it would be impossible to insure a single aircraft carrying 211 tonnes. It could take about 40 shipments to move the gold back to Caracas, traders estimated. “It’s going to be quite a task. Logistically, I’m not sure if the central bank realises the magnitude of the task ahead of them,” said one senior gold banker.” “So maybe Chávez intends to take matters into his own hands, and just sail the booty back to Venezuela on one of his own naval ships. Again, the theft risk is obvious — seamen can be greedy too — and this time there would be no insurance. Chávez is pretty crazy, but I don’t think he’d risk $12 billion that way.” “Which leaves one final alternative. Gold is fungible, and people are actually willing to pay a premium to buy gold which is sitting in the Bank of England’s ultra-secure vaults. So why bother transporting that gold at all? Venezuela could enter into an intercontinental repo transaction, where it sells its gold in the Bank of England to some counterparty, and then promises to buy it all back at a modest discount, on condition that it’s physically delivered to the Venezuelan central bank in Caracas. It would then be up to the counterparty to work out how to get 211 tons of gold to Caracas by a certain date. That gold could be sourced anywhere in the world, and transported in any conceivable manner — being much less predictable and transparent, those shipments would also be much harder to hijack. How much of a discount would a counterparty require to enter into this kind of transaction? Much more than 3.3%, is my guess. And again, it’s not entirely clear who would even be willing to entertain the idea. Glencore, perhaps?” “But here’s one last idea: why doesn’t Chávez crowdsource the problem? He could simply open a gold window at the Banco Central de Venezuela, where anybody at all could deliver standard gold bars. In return, the central bank would transfer to that person an equal number of gold bars in the custody of the Bank of England, plus a modest bounty of say 2% — that’s over $15,000 per 400-ounce bar, at current rates. It would take a little while, but eventually the gold would start trickling in: if you’re willing to pay a constant premium of 2% over the market price for a good, you can be sure that the good in question will ultimately find its way to your door. And the 2% cost of acquiring all that gold would surely be much lower than the cost of insuring and shipping it from England. It would be an elegant market-based solution to an artificial and ideologically-driven problem; I daresay Chávez might even chuckle at the irony of it. He’d just need to watch out for a rise in Andean banditry, as thieves tried to steal the bars on their disparate journeys into Venezuela.”
Quick list of the most useful data resources in crypto
Compiled by the Messari Research team: Dune Analytics - provides a number of pre-set sector and project specific dashboards on key metrics needed to assess the health of the industry. Create custom dashboards with SQL by directly querying the Ethereum blockchain. Nansen - On-chain analysis providing various sector and project specific dashboards. Specifically useful for tracking behavior of specific ERC-20 movements from exchanges, unique addresses and large holders. Token Terminal - Great for comparing traditional financial metrics like revenue generated by various protocols. Useful for generating relative valuation comparisons. DeFi Pulse - DeFi Pulse’s Total Value Locked (TVL) metric has become the de facto approximation of the size of DeFi, calculated by summing all collateral locked in a given protocol. Etherscan - Ethereum’s tried and true block explorer. Use cases include checking the status of current on-chain transactions, looking through historical transactions, viewing top holders of a certain token, and monitoring gas fees. CoinMetrics - Broad range of on-chain, price, volume, mining, and supply data points for almost all major blockchains. Glassnode - Multi-purpose data provider offering an array of charts and dashboards like “whale watching” chart that shows the number of addresses holding more than 1,000 BTC. IntotheBlock- Another on-chain/market analytics tool great for conducting due diligence. Offers unique charts that show, for example, order book market depth. Skew - The place for derivative data across bitcoin and ethereum futures and options, useful for analyzing crypto market structure during stress tests like Black Thursday. Messari - The core screener tools allow me to keep up with short and long term price movements. The reports we’ve compiled are also great for tracking leading crypto funds. The charting tool is great for tracking year-to-date performance:
Below are notable difficulty adjustments when hash rate fell and block times become slower for Bitcoin.
26 Mar 2020 [difficulty adjustment -15.95%, avg block time 11min 54secs]. On the 28th price crashed from $6674 to $6138 ( -8%).
8 Nov 2019 [difficulty adjustment -7.1%, avg block time 10min 46secs]. On the same day price crashed from $9234 to $8783 ( -4.88%).
The next big adjustment was around Nov to Dec 2018 and there were 3 big adjustments with high block times.
19 Dec 2018 [-9.56%, avg block time 11min 3secs]
3 Dec 2018 [-15.13%, avg block time 11min 47secs]
17 Nov 2018 [-7.39%, avg block time 10min 48secs]
There was huge drop off starting on 14th Nov all the way to a bottom on 14-15th Dec ($6351 to $3288 around -48%).
Current situation: We are 1 day 10 hours from the next difficulty adjustment. Projected difficulty adjustment is -5.61% (https://fork.lol/pow/retarget), which could indicate a small dip. However, take note that the date of last adjustment was the 5th and the 3rd halving was on the 11th, between the 5th to the 11th there was increased hashrate from miners trying to mine the final week of 12.5btc that offset the really slow block times after the halving. Therefore it will be the next difficulty adjustment after the one on the 20th that will completely reflect the slower block times after the halving. Currently the median block time taken on the 17th was around 14min (-28.5% difficulty adjustment). For people who do not understand blockchain, basically with the Bitcoin 3rd halving, mining profitability fell for a lot of miners and they probably turned off their miners therefore the blockchain mining time became considerably slower which is reflected with slow transaction speed and higher fees as seen currently. Bitcoin sellers moving their BTC from wallet to an exchange are faced with slow transaction speed and therefore the sell pressure of BTC fell considerably which will attribute to the current price increase. There is a correlation between sell pressure and blockchain congestion (the size of the correlation is undetermined). There is going to be a race. A race between BTC price hiking high enough to attract more miners to reduce avg block times versus the closing window of roughly 2 weeks before the next difficulty adjustment. If the price does not jump high enough, the next difficulty adjustment in the first week of June could signal a huge dip. I am not an expert. I just did some research on the above and wanted to share with fellow Bitcoin compatriots so that we can tread with caution and not lose our shirts. I do not plan to short BTC but I will exit my BTC positions if I expect double digit negative difficulty adjustment in early June. Please visit the original post here https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/gm23pe/warning_blockchain_difficulty_adjustment/ There are pictures in the original post as well as 2nd halving evidence with pics. I could not post pics here. If possible please upvote the original post, a lot of people downvote it. Not sure why people downvote it, maybe veterans attempting to hide information from newcomers to fleece them of their shirt. Update 1:>! As of writing, I have opened a small short position on Bitcoin. Stop loss around 10k, estimated take profit around 8500. The reason is because the difficulty adjustment in the next 20 hours, even though is just -5% roughly is still significant. I direct you to look into all the difficulty adjustments in the last 2 years and you will know how rare it is. The ones I caught were all listed at the very top of the post. Since it is my first time shorting BTC, I take this as a learning opportunity so that I will have some experience to face the bigger difficulty adjustment in the first week of June. Analysis into execution, even in failure I am happy.!< Update 2: The difficulty adjustment (DA) happened roughly 6 hours ago and the sell pressure from -6% DA did not seem to be affecting the market much. However, please take a look now at the estimation for the next DA. On https://bitcoin.clarkmoody.com/dashboard/ it is estimated to be -25%. On https://fork.lol/pow/retarget estimated to be -18%. On https://www.blockchain.com/charts/median-confirmation-time the median block time for the last day was 16.8min. My original proposition that the true DA of the halving can only be realized in the next DA stands and that it will be considerable. The increased sell pressure from that DA will be highly significant. That is why there is a race by current miners to get the BTC price up high enough to attract more miners to not have the DA drop too much. Update 3: Current BTC price at $9100 ( ~39 hours after DA). Then again BTC could have dropped from all sorts of reason. However the coincidence with the DA and with all the past DA is just too high to simply shrug off as irrelevant. Anyways past result cannot predict future ones, stay safe with the trading. Will no longer check on this post. References: Difficulty adjustment dates taken from https://btc.com/stats/diff Bitcoin graph history for price movement taken from coinmarketcap. Median confirmation time (block time) taken from https://www.blockchain.com/charts/median-confirmation-time Credits to people who assisted the analysis: kairepaire for pointing out faster block times between 5th-11th. babies_eater for https://fork.lol/pow/retarget moes_tavern_wifi for https://bitcoin.clarkmoody.com/dashboard/ Pantamis for https://diff.cryptothis.com/
Why Ethereum Problems Make UMI the Flagship Among the New Generation Cryptocurrencies
https://preview.redd.it/8skuypxp9lj51.jpg?width=1023&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=ba5a38ba592428f92dc7c1943a780ff127132875 Ethereum cryptocurrency that comes second in terms of capitalization on the crypto market is traditionally seen as fast and profitable. However, over the last few weeks it's had a rough patch. Since early August, the network has had huge queues of transactions pending processing while fees have skyrocketed and surpassed the historical high. The main issue though is that even fees of a few dollars per transfer don't help get rid of the“traffic jams”. The cause of this is numerous DeFi projects and a huge number of financial pyramids based on the Ethereum platform. Both generate excessive load on the network. The situation is downright unpleasant, and our users might question whether the UMI network could face a similar challenge? We'd like to assure you it could not. The UMI network is by default protected against these problems — it cannot have “traffic jams”, fees or financial pyramids. But first things first. How has the Ethereum network ground to a halt? In its report dated August 4, Arcane Research that provides analysis within the field of cryptocurrency stated that over the previous week the daily size of transaction fees in the Ethereum network has surged up to a record high for over two and a half years. On August 3, the median value #%D0%9F%D1%80%D0%B8%D0%BC%D0%B5%D1%80_%D0%B8%D1%81%D0%BF%D0%BE%D0%BB%D1%8C%D0%B7%D0%BE%D0%B2%D0%B0%D0%BD%D0%B8%D1%8F)of the fee amounted to $0.82, with the overall amount of transaction fees totaling $2 mln. However, it only signaled the start of real problems. Over the next week, fees continued to grow and by August 11 the median fee value almost doubled equaling $1.57. Larry Cermak, an expert at a big analytical and news-making crypto portal The Block, wrote in his August 15 tweet that over a week the total amount of transaction fees in the Ethereum network totaled $34.5 mln, having surpassed its historical high. Meanwhile, in the Bitcoin network that is seen as too expensive the fees were almost four times lower at $9 mln. The total fee amount paid by cryptocurrency users over a week:
Ethereum — $34.5 mln;
Bitcoin — $9 mln;
Monero — $2,240;
Tezos — $1,876;
Cardano — $1,615;
XRP — $1,138;
BSV — $1,102;
Stellar — $1,059;
Bitcoin Cash — $1,027;
UMI — $0. Let's talk about it a little later.
https://preview.redd.it/z9azd9v6alj51.png?width=1600&format=png&auto=webp&s=25c365d6e14665ecda4a2b8d19b2fc57dd5cde1e Historical Growth Chart for Ethereum Fees.Source The existing situation shows that Ethereum is actually not as fast and profitable as commonly cited. Additionally, this could happen to almost any cryptocurrency except UMI that charges no fees whatsoever. We will tell you why. Why have these problems emerged? There is nothing unoriginal: the Ethereum network simply can't handle an increased load. Arcane Research analysts consider that a principal cause of this situation is the constantly increasing number of the DeFi ecosystem projects built on the Ethereum blockchain. Their number is growing all the time which causes the overload of the network. As of August 12, the total amount of funds in DeFi applications reached $4.3 billion which is 19.5% higher than that in the past week. At the time of writing this article, the amount surged to $6.21 billion. You can see the current data here. What is the most unpleasant about DeFi protocols is that a lot of them are scam projects. Which is not the worst part though. There is also another factor that significantly slows down the Ethereum network. There are a lot of pyramid-like projects that are built on the EOS platform and use smart contracts. One of them is SmartWay Forsage, which regularly overloads the network with a large number of transactions, causes traffic jams, and, consequently, leads to increased fees (keep in mind that Ethereum miners choose transactions with a higher commission). Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of Ethereum, revealed his disapproval of the SmartWay Forsage methodology and asked them to "leave and not pollute Ethereum ecology in the future". However, the project is slow to do this — it continues to deceive users. This is only the tip of the iceberg of scam projects which abounds on the EOS network –– they continually emerge, work for a while, then go down as scams and are replaced with new ones. This never-ending stream of "investment projects" based on the Ponzi scheme overloads the system. This is the reason why Adam Back, a pioneer of the crypto industry and founder of the technology company Blockstream, equated Ethereum with such infamous projects as Onecoin and Bitconnect. Adam Back's solid dig at Ethereum became the subject of much debate among crypto enthusiasts. Of course, it all doesn't mean that Ethereum is a bad cryptocurrency. On the contrary, it has a lot of advantages over other coins. But all that has happened exposes Ethereum's faults which must be eliminated. The problem is that they may not be fixable. It is far from certain that the developers will be able to get rid of all the defects as the system has huge scalability problems. The crypto community has to admit that Ethereum, like other first-generation cryptocurrencies, has issues with capacity, fees, and scalability and is gradually becoming obsolete. 2020 is the time for young innovative cryptocurrencies such as UMI. UMI is the flagship of new-generation cryptocurrencies. In real fact, any cryptocurrency could face it. Each cryptocurrency charges fees which typically surge when the network is overloaded or the price is going up. Everyone will remember 2017 when in line with price growth and the network's overload Bitcoin transaction fee reached a high of around $40. But when it comes to UMI, it works the other way round. The UMI network's advantages are high capacity, no fees, and scaling possibilities. It uses the best and fastest crypto industry solutions and excludes all inefficient methods by default. Smart optimization in combination with the Proof-of-Authority technology operating on the master node basis enables almost instant payments. At the stage of network testing, an incredibly high capacity was achieved:
up to 4,369 transactions per second;
up to 262,140 transactions per minute;
up to 15,728,400 transactions per hour;
up to 377,481,600 transactions per day.
Ethereum processes about 20 transactions per second. It means that the UMI network can process transactions that Ethereum processes over a year in 1 to 5 days — and with no fees. https://preview.redd.it/rwohnov3alj51.png?width=1125&format=png&auto=webp&s=4329b75c0bd8b7a22276b529f5ca433d17a0874f The UMI network can process transactions that Ethereum processes over a year in a few days and with no fees.More details What is more important is that less than 0.001% of the network's overall potential is used now. The UMI network has a lot of reserve capacity and can handle hundreds of thousands of times heavier load. Moreover, with scaling possibilities, UMI can keep up with the times. The UMI code ensures the safe introduction of any upgrades — the network can be easily modified and scaled with cutting edge technology solutions. In other words, traffic jams will never pose a problem for us. UMI will instantly process all transactions, with no fees. Always. https://preview.redd.it/t0068th0alj51.png?width=544&format=png&auto=webp&s=019f46ec8c093480c4638cf098312a5a146134a8 A real-time speedometer displays the number of transactions processed by the UMI network per second.Link Additionally, unlike Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies, the UMI's staking smart contract prevents possibilities of any pyramid schemes, meaning eliminates their negative influence. Our staking is completely safe and secured against scammers. Read more about this in our article. Any UMI staking structure could work forever. In other words, you can multiply your coins at a rate of up to 40% per month for an indefinitely long period of time. UMI doesn't inherit the disadvantages of the first-generation cryptocurrencies. This is an innovative, carefully designed network based on state-of-the-art technologies. UMI is an ambitious step toward the future. And we're making it together right now! Sincerely yours, UMI team
...will Bitcoin fall from its #1 spot in the incoming bull run? ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Whenever I look on the charts from let's say past month for:
It's visible that whenever there is a slightest spike 3-10% in price, the fee raises from ~5 sat/b to around ~70 sat/b (14x the usual). Most of the current blocks are filled to the top with transactions. What do you think will happen when we start seeing 15% or 20% price spikes? It is clear that Bitcoin has reached its limit in 2017 and almost nothing has been done since then. There is an argument about segwit allowing for 2MB blocks. The reality is that the 2MB blocks are very, VERY rare and it's clearly not enough to satisfy Bitcoin in the incoming bull run. Check out this Bitcoin block size chart. Bitcoin lightning? It is good for some crypto geeks however an average Joe will not know how to setup the lightning channel. At the current state the user experience is just so bad. I can't think about BTCLN succeeding on the global scale. I can agree about Bitcoin being digital gold however it is not ready for the every day use. I have a strong feeling the whole cryptocurrency community will flip on its head in 2021. For the first time in history we will be seeing Bitcoin on #3 or even #4 spot. Bitcoin has wasted potential in it. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Final words: Nothing is perfect, I know that. That's why we have a such variety in the altcoin's market with every new project trying to be better than its predecessor. It's all about improvement. Team #bitcoin_cash #ethereum #monero.
Cardano is a Blockchain project, also called 3rd generation Blockchain because of its scientific philosophy, designed and developed by a team of worldwide scientists and engineers. The aim of the project is to develop a technology that is secure, flexible and scalable and can therefore be used by many millions of users. In contrast to other projects, Cardano pursues a policy that seeks to reconcile the needs of the user with those of the regulatory authorities, combining privacy with regulation. Cardano’s vision is that the project will lead to greater global financial integration for all people by providing all people with open access to fair financial services. Cardano wants to create a technological platform on which financial applications can be developed and executed. It has basically great similarities with Ethereum. Cardano is a platform such as Ethereum, EOS or NEO that enables the creation of new tokens and decentralized applications (dApps) and smart contracts. From a technical point of view, however, there are major differences which we will discuss later. The cryptocurrency of Cardano is ADA. Like any crypto currency, ADA allows the user to send assets within the Cardano network seamlessly over the Internet in a secure and fast manner. You can find the current price of ADA on our chart page.
Cardano was founded by Ethereum co-founders Charles Hoskinson and Jeremy Wood after both left the Ethereum project after a disagreement over further development. While the later Cardano founders wanted to create a commercial enterprise behind Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin’s group was able to assert itself by setting up a charitable foundation behind the project. Logically, Hoskinson and Wood founded a company, Input Output Hong Kong (IOHK), to manage Cardano’s research and development. Between September 2015 and January 2017, Cardano conducted a public ICO that raised a total of 62 million US dollars. About two thirds of all Ada tokens were sold. Cardano was officially launched on 29 September 2017. Currently the project is still in its bootstrap era (“Byron”). In the bootstrap era, when people buy or sell Ada, the transaction is automatically delegated to a pool of trusted nodes that manage the network. They do not receive block rewards in this phase of the project. IOHK is currently working on numerous improvements and features. The next phase “Shelley” is to be introduced in 2019. In this phase, the project will grow into a fully decentralized and autonomous system. This will be followed by the “Goguen” era, in which the integration of smart contracts is planned. This is followed by the “Basho” phase, which is intended to improve performance, and finally the “Voltaire” phase, which is intended to add a treasury system and a governance model (“Liquid Democracy”). The complete roadmap can be seen here.
The organization behind Cardano
As already written, Charles Hoskinson has decided to found the company IOHK in order to guarantee a coordinated and planned development of the project. IOHK is responsible for the design, development and maintenance of the Cardano platform until 2020. In addition, however, there were originally two other institutions that took care of the Cardano project: Emurgo and the Cardano Foundation, based in Switzerland. Emurgo is a Japanese company that is also currently pushing partnerships with other commercial companies and organizing Cardano’s business development. In particular, the Cardano Foundation was entrusted with administrative tasks. Otherwise the Foundation was responsible for public relations, trademark law, lobbying and cooperation with governments and regulators. In October 2018, however, there was a break between IOHK/ Emurgo and the Cardano Foundation. Among other things, Hoskinson has accused the Cardano Foundation under the direction of Michael Parsons of inaction. As a result IOHK and Emurgo decided to take over the tasks of the foundation.
Cardano: 3rd generation blockchain
Charles Hoskinson has recognized that 2nd generation blockchains still have many open problems to be successful in the long run. These are in particular scalability, interoperability and sustainability. Cardano has (partly) developed new concepts and technologies for this purpose.
In terms of scalability, there are three challenges for Cardano:
Transactions per second (TPS)
Network / Bandwidth
Transactions per second
The Transactions per Second (TPS) measure how many transactions per second can be written to a block. According to Hoskinson, however, this is only part of the problem of scaling. While Bitcoin 3-7 TPS and Ethereum 10-20 TPS create, this is far from enough to host millions of users. The solution to this problem is Cardanos Ouroboros Proof-of-Stake algorithm, which we will discuss later.
A further challenge is the network, which will also have an exponentially increasing demand for network resources with millions of users as the demand increases with the number of transactions. The demand will grow in size regions of several hundred terabytes or even exabytes. Therefore, it will be impossible to maintain a homogeneous network topology in which each node forwards each transaction and message. Not every node will have the necessary resources. To solve this problem, Cardano intends to use a technology called RINA.
Since the blockchain has to store the data forever, there will be an enormous and constantly growing amount of data to be scaled (“Data Scale”). The problem is obvious. If every node has to keep a complete copy of the entire blockchain, this will not be possible for every node from the point of view of resources. The solution is that not every node needs all data. The solution approaches therefore include in detail:
Charles Hoskinson believes that there will not be a single crypto currency to be used in the future. Therefore Cardano aims at enabling the different blockchains to communicate with each other. Cardano’s vision is to create an “Internet of blockchains” in which there is no intermediary. A solution to this problem should be for Cardano, Sidechains. The concept has been around in crypto space for quite some time. Simply put, sidechains are parallel blockchains that can communicate with the main blockchain. In addition, Cardano tries to comply with all existing compliance rules: KYC (Know Your Customer), AML (Anti Money Laundering), ATF (Anti Terrorist Financing). In order for this to work, Cardano provides metadata to each transaction.
According to Hoskinson, sustainability is the most difficult challenge. Basically, it means that continuous developments must be carried out on the system. This requires financial resources. Both a patronage and an ICO do not make sense for Hoskinson. Patronage leads to centralization, while ICOs provide short-term resources for the ecosystem, but at the same time produce a new, useless token. For this reason, Cardano is oriented towards Dash’s treasury system. Each time a block is added to the block chain, a portion of the rewards is added to the Treasury. If funds are needed for development, they can be allocated. To this end, Cardano has developed a governance model (“liquid democracy”) in which stakeholders can vote on a proposal for the distribution of funds.
Ada: Ouroboros Proof-of-Stake
Similar to Ethereum’s future proof-of-stake (PoS) “Casper”, Cardano also relies on a PoS. This means that there are no miners within the Cardano network responsible for validating transactions. A new proof-of-stake algorithm called Ouroboros was developed for Cardano. The basic difference between Ouroboros and Ethereum’s Casper or other similar algorithms is how block premium recipients (validators) are selected. The core idea of the Ouroboros Proof of Stake is that a node is selected to create a new block with a probability proportional to the total number of Ada. This means that the more Ada a stakeholder has, the more he can earn over time. In principle, each node with an Ada credit balance greater than 0 is referred to as a “stakeholder”. When a node is selected to create a new block, it is called a slot leader. The slot leader writes the transactions into a block, signs this block with his secret key and publishes the block in the network. A fundamental problem in this electoral process is randomness. To achieve this, Cardano uses a Multiparty Computation (MPC) approach in which each voter independently performs an action called coin tossing (Coin-Fllipping Protocol).
The power players of consumer finance in the 21st century will be crypto-native companies who build with blockchain technology at their core.
The crypto landscape is still nascent. We’re still very much in the fragmented, unbundled phase of the industry lifecycle. Beyond what Genesis Block is doing, there are signs of other companies slowly starting to bundle financial services into what could be an all-in-one bank replacement. So the key question that this series hopes to answer:
Which crypto-native company will successfully become the bank of the future?
We obviously think Genesis Block is well-positioned to win. But we certainly aren’t the only game in town. In this series, we’ll be doing an analysis of who is most capable of thwarting our efforts. We’ll look at categories like crypto exchanges, crypto wallets, centralized lending & borrowing services, and crypto debit card companies. Each category will have its own dedicated post. Today we’re analyzing big crypto exchanges. The two companies we’ll focus on today are Coinbase (biggest American exchange) and Binance (biggest global exchange). They are the top two exchanges in terms of Bitcoin trading volume. They are in pole position to winning this market — they have a huge existing userbase and strong financial resources. Will Coinbase or Binance become the bank of the future? Can their early success propel them to winning the broader consumer finance market? Is their growth too far ahead for anyone else to catch up? Let’s dive in. https://preview.redd.it/lau4hevpm7f51.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=2c5de1ba497199f36aa194e5809bd86e5ab533d8
The most formidable exchange on the global stage is Binance (Crunchbase). All signs suggest they have significantly more users and a stronger balance sheet than Coinbase. No other exchange is executing as aggressively and relentlessly as Binance is. The cadence at which they are shipping and launching new products is nothing short of impressive. As Tushar Jain from Multicoin argues, Binance is Blitzscaling. Here are some of the products that they’ve launched in the last 18 months. Only a few are announced but still pre-launch.
Binance is well-positioned to become the crypto-powered, all-in-one, bundled solution for financial services. They already have so many of the pieces. But the key question is:
Can they create a cohesive & united product experience?
Binance is strong, but they do have a few major weaknesses that could slow them down.
Traders & Speculators Binance is currently very geared for speculators, traders, and financial professionals. Their bread-and-butter is trading (spot, margin, options, futures). Their UI is littered with depth charts, order books, candlesticks, and other financial concepts that are beyond the reach of most normal consumers. Their product today is not at all tailored for the broader consumer market. Given Binance’s popularity and strength among the pro audience, it’s unlikely that they will dumb down or simplify their product any time soon. That would jeopardize their core business. Binance will likely need an entirely new product/brand to go beyond the pro user crowd. That will take time (or an acquisition). So the question remains, is Binance even interested in the broader consumer market? Or will they continue to focus on their core product, the one-stop-shop for pro crypto traders?
Controversies & Hot Water Binance has had a number of controversies. No one seems to know where they are based — so what regulatory agencies can hold them accountable? Last year, some sensitive, private user data got leaked. When they announced their debit card program, they had to remove mentions of Visa quickly after. And though the “police raid” story proved to be untrue, there are still a lot of questions about what happened with their Shanghai office shut down (where there is smoke, there is fire). If any company has had a “move fast and break things” attitude, it is Binance. That attitude has served them well so far but as they try to do business in more regulated countries like America, this will make their road much more difficult — especially in the consumer market where trust takes a long time to earn, but can be destroyed in an instant. This is perhaps why the Binance US product is an empty shell when compared to their main global product.
Disjointed Product Experience Because Binance has so many different teams launching so many different services, their core product is increasingly feeling disjointed and disconnected. Many of the new features are sloppily integrated with each other. There’s no cohesive product experience. This is one of the downsides of executing and shipping at their relentless pace. For example, users don’t have a single wallet that shows their balances. Depending on if the user wants to do spot trading, margin, futures, or savings… the user needs to constantly be transferring their assets from one wallet to another. It’s not a unified, frictionless, simple user experience. This is one major downside of the “move fast and break things” approach.
BNB token Binance raised $15M in a 2017 ICO by selling their $BNB token. The current market cap of $BNB is worth more than $2.6B. Financially this token has served them well. However, given how BNB works (for example, their token burn), there are a lot of open questions as to how BNB will be treated with US security laws. Their Binance US product so far is treading very lightly with its use of BNB. Their token could become a liability for Binance as it enters more regulated markets. Whether the crypto community likes it or not, until regulators get caught up and understand the power of decentralized technology, tokens will still be a regulatory burden — especially for anything that touches consumers.
Binance Chain & Smart Contract Platform Binance is launching its own smart contract platform soon. Based on compatibility choices, they have their sights aimed at the Ethereum developer community. It’s unclear how easy it’ll be to convince developers to move to Binance chain. Most of the current developer energy and momentum around smart contracts is with Ethereum. Because Binance now has their own horse in the race, it’s unlikely they will ever decide to leverage Ethereum’s DeFi protocols. This could likely be a major strategic mistake — and hubris that goes a step too far. Binance will be pushing and promoting protocols on their own platform. The major risk of being all-in on their own platform is that they miss having a seat on the Ethereum rocket ship — specifically the growth of DeFi use-cases and the enormous value that can be unlocked. Integrating with Ethereum’s protocols would be either admitting defeat of their own platform or competing directly against themselves.
The crypto-native company that I believe is more likely to become the bank of the future is Coinbase (crunchbase). Their dominance in America could serve as a springboard to winning the West (Binance has a stronger foothold in Asia). Coinbase has more than 30M users. Their exchange business is a money-printing machine. They have a solid reputation as it relates to compliance and working with regulators. Their CEO is a longtime member of the crypto community. They are rumored to be going public soon.
Let’s look at what makes them strong and a likely contender for winning the broader consumer finance market.
Different Audience, Different Experience Coinbase has been smart to create a unique product experience for each audience — the pro speculator crowd and the common retail user. Their simple consumer version is at Coinbase.com. That’s the default. Their product for the more sophisticated traders and speculators is at Coinbase Pro (formerly GDAX). Unlike Binance, Coinbase can slowly build out the bank of the future for the broad consumer market while still having a home for their hardcore crypto traders. They aren’t afraid to have different experiences for different audiences.
Brand & Design Coinbase has a strong product design team. Their brand is capable of going beyond the male-dominated crypto audience. Their product is clean and simple — much more consumer-friendly than Binance. It’s clear they spend a lot of time thinking about their user experience. Interacting directly with crypto can sometimes be rough and raw (especially for n00bs). When I was at Mainframe we hosted a panel about Crypto UX challenges at the DevCon4 Dapp Awards. Connie Yang (Head of Design at Coinbase) was on the panel. She was impressive. Some of their design philosophies will bode well as they push to reach the broader consumer finance market.
Early Signs of Bundling Though Coinbase has nowhere near as many products & services as Binance, they are slowly starting to add more financial services that may appeal to the broader market. They are now letting depositors earn interest on USDC (also DAI & Tezos). In the UK they are piloting a debit card. Users can now invest in crypto with dollar-cost-averaging. It’s not much, but it’s a start. You can start to see hints of a more bundled solution around financial services.
Let’s now look at some things that could hold them back.
Slow Cadence In the fast-paced world of crypto, and especially when compared to Binance, Coinbase does not ship very many new products very often. This is perhaps their greatest weakness. Smaller, more nimble startups may run circles around them. They were smart to launch Coinbase Ventures where tey invest in early-stage startups. They can now keep an ear to the ground on innovation. Perhaps their cadence is normal for a company of their size — but the Binance pace creates quite the contrast.
Institutional Focus As a company, we are a Coinbase client. We love their institutional offering. It’s clear they’ve been investing a lot in this area. A recent Coinbase blog post made it clear that this has been a focus: “Over the past 12 months, Coinbase has been laser-focused on building out the types of features and services that our institutional customers need.” Their Tagomi acquisition only re-enforced this focus. Perhaps this is why their consumer product has felt so neglected. They’ve been heavily investing in their institutional services since May 2018. For a company that’s getting very close to an IPO, it makes sense that they’d focus on areas that present strong revenue opportunities — as they do with institutional clients. Even for big companies like Coinbase, it’s hard to have a split focus. If they are “laser-focused” on the institutional audience, it’s unlikely they’ll be launching any major consumer products anytime soon.
Coinbase Wrap Up
At Genesis Block, we‘re proud to be working with Coinbase. They are a fantastic company. However, I don’t believe that they’ll succeed in building their own product for the broader consumer finance market. While they have incredible design, there are no signs that they are focused on or capable of internally building this type of product. Similar to Binance, I think it’s far more likely that Coinbase acquires a promising young startup with strong growth.
Other US-based exchanges worth mentioning are Kraken, Gemini, and Bittrex. So far we’ve seen very few signs that any of them will aggressively attack broader consumer finance. Most are going in the way of Binance — listing more assets and adding more pro tools like margin and futures trading. And many, like Coinbase, are trying to attract more institutional customers. For example, Gemini with their custody product.
Coinbase and Binance have huge war chests and massive reach. For that alone, they should always be considered threats to Genesis Block. However, their products are very, very different than the product we’re building. And their approach is very different as well. They are trying to educate and onboard people into crypto. At Genesis Block, we believe the masses shouldn’t need to know or care about it. We did an entire series about this, Spreading Crypto. Most everyone needs banking — whether it be to borrow, spend, invest, earn interest, etc. Not everyone needs a crypto exchange. For non-crypto consumers (the mass market), the differences between a bank and a crypto exchange are immense. Companies like Binance and Coinbase make a lot of money on their crypto exchange business. It would be really difficult, gutsy, and risky for any of them to completely change their narrative, messaging, and product to focus on the broader consumer market. I don’t believe they would ever risk biting the hand that feeds them. In summary, as it relates to a digital bank aimed at the mass market, I believe both Coinbase and Binance are much more likely to acquire a startup in this space than they are to build it themselves. And I think they would want to keep the brand/product distinct and separate from their core crypto exchange business. So back to the original question, is Coinbase and Binance a threat to Genesis Block? Not really. Not today. But they could be, and for that, we want to stay close to them. ------ Other Ways to Consume Today's Episode:
CryptoDiffer teamHello, everyone!We are glad to meet here:Max Freeman (@maxfreeman4), Project Lead at Epic CashYoga Dude (@Yogadude), PR&Marketing at Epic CashXenolink (@Xenolink), Advisor at Epic Cash Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash Thanks Max, we are excited to be here! Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash Hello Everyone! Thank you for having us here! Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash Thank you to the CryptoDiffer team and CryptoDiffer community for hosting us! CryptoDiffer teamLet`s start from the first introduction question:Q1: Can you introduce yourself to the community? What is your background and how did you join Epic Cash? Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash Hello! My background is Marketing and Business Development, I’ve been in crypto since 2011 started with Bitcoin, then Monero in 2014, Ethereum in 2015 and at some point Doge for fun and profit. I joined Epic Cash team in September 2019 handling PR and Marketing. I saw in Epic Cash what was missing in my previous cryptos — things that were missing in Bitcoin and Monero especially. Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash Hello Cryptodiffer Community, I am not an original co-founder nor am I a developer for the Epic Cash project. I am however a community member that is involved in helping scale this project to higher levels. One of the many beauties of Epic Cash is that every single member in the community has the opportunity to be part of EPIC’s team, it can be from development all the way to content producing. Epic Cash is a community driven project. The true Core Team of Epic Cash is our community. I believe a community that is the Core Team is truly powerful. EPIC Cash has one of the freshest and strongest communities I have seen in quite a while. Which is one of the reasons why I became involved in this project. Epic displayed some of the most self community produced content I have seen in a project. I’m actually a doctor of medicine but in terms of my experience in crypto, I have been involved in the industry since 2012 beginning with mining Litecoin. Since then I have been doing deep dive analysis on different projects, investing, and building a network in crypto that I will utilize to help connect and scale Epic in every way I can. To give some credit to those people in my network that have been a part of helping give Epic exposure, I would like to give a special thanks to u/Tetsugan and u/Saurabhblr. Tetsugan has been doing a lot of work for the Japanese community to penetrate the Japanese market, and Japan has already developed a growing interest in Epic. Daku Sarabh the owner and creator of Crypto Daku Robinhooders, I would like to thank him and his community for giving us one of our first large AMA’s, which he has supported our project early and given us a free AMA. Many more to thank but can’t be disclosed. Also thank you to all the Epic Community leaders, developers, and Content producers! Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash I’m Max Freeman, which stands for “Maximum Freedom for Mankind”. I started working on the ideas that would become Epic in 2018. I fell in love with Bitcoin in 2017 but realized that it needs privacy at the base layer, fungibility, better scalability in order to go to the next level. CryptoDiffer team Really interesting backgrounds I must admit, pleasure to see the team that clearly has one vision of the project by being completely decentralized:) Q2: Can you briefly describe what is Epic Cash in 3–5 sentences? What technology stands behind Epic Cash and why it’s better than the existing one? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash I’d like to highlight the differences between Epic and the two highest-valued privacy coin projects, Monero and Zcash. XMR has always-on privacy like Epic does, but at a cost: Its blockchain is over 20x more data intensive than Epic, which limits its possibilities for scalability. Epic’s blockchain is small and light enough to run a full node on cell phones, something that is in our product road map. ZEC by comparison can’t run on low end devices because of its zero knowledge based approach, and only 1% of transactions are fully private. Epic is simply newer, more advanced technology than prior networks thanks to Mimblewimble We will also add more algorithms to widen the range of hardware that can participate in mining. For example, cell phones and tablets based around ARM chips. Millions of people can mine Epic that can’t mine Bitcoin, and that will help grow the network rapidly. There are some great short videos on our YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQBFfksJlM97rgrplLRwNUg/videos that explain why we believe we have created something truly special here. Our core architecture derives from Grin, so we are fortunate to benefit on an ongoing basis from their considerable development efforts. We are focused on making our currency truly usable and widely available, beyond a store of value and becoming a true medium of exchange. Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash Well we all have our views, but in a nutshell, we offer things that were missing in the previous cryptos. We have sound fiscal emission schedule matching Bitcoin, but we are vastly more private and faster. Our blockchain is lighter than Bitcoin or Monero and our tech is more scalable. Also, we are unique in that we are mineable with CPUs and GPUs as well as ASICs, giving the broadest population the ability to mine Epic Cash. Plus, you can’t forget FUNGIBILITY 🙂 we are big on that — since you can’t have true privacy without fungibility. Also, please understand, we have HUGE respect to all the cryptos that came before us, we learned a lot from them, and thanks to their mistakes we evolved. Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash To add on, what also makes Epic Cash unique is the ability to decentralize the mining using a tri-algo model of Random X (CPU), Progpow (GPU), and Cuckoo (ASIC) for an ability to do hybrid mining. I believe this is an issue we can see today in Bitcoin having centralized mining and the average user has a costly barrier of entry. To follow up on this one in my opinion one of the things we adopted that we have seen success for , in example Bitcoin and Monero, is a strong community driven coin. I believe having a community driven coin will provide a more organic atmosphere especially when starting with No ICO, or Premine with a fair distribution model for everyone. CryptoDiffer team Q3: What are the major milestones Epic Cash has achieved so far? Maybe you can share with us some exciting plans for future weeks/months? Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash Since we went live in September of 2019, we attracted a very large community of users, miners, investors and contributors from across the world. Epic Cash is a very international project with white papers translated into over 30 languages. We are very much a community driven project; this is very evident from our content and the amount of translations in our white papers and in our social media content. We are constantly working on improving our usability, security and privacy, as well as getting our message and philosophy out into the world to achieve mass adoption. We have a lot of exciting plans for our project, the plan is to make Epic Cash into something that is More than Money. You can tell I am the Marketing guy since my message is less about the actual tech and more about the usability and use cases for Epic Cash, I think our Team and Community have a great mix of technical, practical, social and fiscal experiences. Since we opened our YouTube channels content for community submissions, we have seen our content translated into Spanish, French, German, Polish, Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, Russian, and other languages Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash Our future development roadmap will be published soon and includes 4 tracks: Usability Mining Core Protocol Ecosystem Development Core Protocol Epic Server 2.9.0 — this release improves the difficulty adjustment and is aimed at making block emission closer to the target 60 seconds, particularly reducing the incidence of extremely short and long blocks — Status: In Development (Testing) Anticipated Release: June 2020 Epic Server 3.0.0 — this completes the rebase to Grin 3.0.0 and serves as the prerequisite to some important functional building blocks for the future of the ecosystem. Specifically, sending via Tor (which eliminates the need to open ports), proof of payment (useful for certain dex applications e.g. Bisq), and our native mobile app. Status: In Development (Testing) Anticipated Release: Fall 2020 Non-Interactive Transactions — this will enhance usability by enabling “fire and forget” send-to-address functionality that users are accustomed to from most cryptocurrencies. Status: Drawing Board Anticipated Release: n/a Scaling Options — when blocks start becoming full, how will we increase capacity? Two obvious options are increasing the block size, as well as a Lightning Network-style Layer 2 structure. Status: Drawing Board Anticipated Release: n/a Confidential Assets — Similar to Raven, Tari, and Beam, the ability to create independently tradable assets that ride on the Epic Blockchain. Status: Drawing Board Anticipated Release: n/a Usability GUI Wallet 2.0 — Restore from seed words and various usability enhancements — Status: Needs Assessment Anticipated Release: Fall 2020 Mobile App — Native mobile experience for iOS and Android. Status: In Development (Testing) Anticipated Release: Winter 2020 Telegram Integration — Anonymous payments over the Telegram network, bot functionality for groups. Status: Drawing Board Anticipated Release: n/a Mining RandomX on ARM — Our 4th PoW algorithm, this will enable tablets, cell phones, and low power devices such as Raspberry Pi to participate in mining. Status: Needs Assessment Anticipated Release: n/a The economics of mining Epic are extremely compelling for countries that have free or extremely cheap electricity, since anyone with an ordinary PC can mine. Individual people around the world can simply run the miner and earn meaningful money (imagine Venezuela for example), something that has not been possible since the very early days of Bitcoin. Ecosystem Development Atomic Swaps — Connecting Epic to other blockchains in a trustless way, starting with ETH so that Epic can trade on DeFi infrastructure such as Uniswap, Kyber, etc. Status: Drawing Board Anticipated Release: n/a Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash From the Community aspect, we have been further developing our community international reach. We have been seeing an increase in interest from South America, China, Russia, Japan, Italy, and the Philippines. We are working on targeting more countries. We truly aim to be a decentralized project that is open to everyone worldwide. CryptoDiffer team Great, thank you for your answers, we now can move to community questions part! Cryptodiffer Community You have 3 mining algorithms, the question is: how do they not compete with each other? Is there any benefit of mining on the GPU and CPU if someone is mining on the ASIC? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash The block selection is deterministic, so that every 100 blocks, 60% are for RandomX (CPU), 38% for ProgPow (GPU), and 2% for Cuckoo (ASIC) — the policy is flexible so that we can have as many algorithms with any percentages we want. The goal is to make the most decentralized and resilient network possible, and with that in mind we are excited to work on enabling tablets and cell phones to mine, since that opens it up to millions of people that otherwise can’t take part. Cryptodiffer Community To Run a project smoothly, Funding is very important, From where does the Funding/revenue come from? Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash Yes, early on this was realized and in order to scale a project funds are indeed needed. Epic Cash did not start with any funding and no ICO and was organically genesis mined with no pre-mine. Epic cash is also a nonprofit community driven project similar to Monero. There is no profit-driven entity in the picture. To overcome the revenue issue Epic Cash setup a development fund tax that decreases 1% every year until 2028 when Epic Cash reaches singularity with Bitcoin emissions. Currently it is at 7.77%. This will help support the scaling of the project. Cryptodiffer Community Hi! In your experience working also with MONERO can you please clarify which are those identified problems that EPIC CASH aims to develop and resolve? What’s the main advantage that EPIC CASH has over MONERO? Thank you! Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash First, I must admit that I am still a huge fan and HODLer of Monero. That said: ✅ our blockchain is MUCH lighter than Monero’s ✅ our transaction processing speed is much faster ✅ our address-less blockchain is more private ✅ Epic Cash can be mined with CPU (RandomX) GPU (ProgPow) and Cuckoo, whereas Monero migrated to RandomX and currently only mineable with CPU Cryptodiffer Community
the feature ‘Cut Through’ deletes old data, how is it decided which data will be deletes, and what are the consequences of it for the platform and therefore the users?
On your website I see links to download Epic wallet and mining software for Linux,Windows and MacOs, I am a user of android, is there a version for me, or does it have a release date?
Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash
This is one of the most exciting features of Mimblewimble, which is its extraordinary ability to compress blockchain data. In Bitcoin, the entire history of a coin must be replayed every time it is spent, and comprehensive details are permanently stored in the blockchain. Epic discards spent transaction inputs and consolidates outputs, storing neither addresses or amounts, only a tiny kernel to allow sender and receiver to prove their transaction.
The Vitex mobile app is great for today, and we have a native mobile app for iOS and Android in the works as well.
Cryptodiffer Community $EPIC Have total Supply of 21,000,000 EPIC , is there any burning plan? Or Buyback program to maintain $EPIC price in the future? Who is Epic Biggest competitors? And what’s makes epic better than competitors? Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash We respect the older generation coins like Bitcoin. But we have learned that the supply economics of Bitcoin is very sound. Until today we can witness how the Bitcoin is being adopted institutionally and by retail. We match the 21 million BTC supply economics because it is an inelastic fixed model which makes the long-term economics very sound. To have an elastic model of burning tokens or printing tokens will not have a solid economic future. Take for example the USD which is an inflating supply. In terms of competitors we look at everyone in crypto with respect and also learn from everyone. If we had to compare to other Mimblewimble tech coins, Grin is an inelastic forever inflating supply which in the long term is not sound economics. Beam however is an inelastic model but is formed as a corporation. The fair distribution is not there because of the permanent revenue model setup for them. Epic Cash a non-profit development tax fund model for scaling purposes that will disappear by 2028’s singularity. Cryptodiffer Community What your plans in place for global expansion, are you focusing on only market at this time? Or focus on building and developing or getting customers and users, or partnerships? Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash Since we are a community project, we have many developers, in addition to the core team. Our plans for Global expansion are simple — we have advocates in different regions addressing their audiences in their native languages. We are growing organically, by explaining our ideology and usability. The idea is to grow beyond needing a fiat bridge for crypto use, but to rather replace fiat with our borderless, private and fungible crypto so people can use it to get goods and services without using banks. We are not limiting ourselves to one particular demographic — Epic Cash is a valid solution for the gamers, investors, techie and non techie people, and the unbanked. Cryptodiffer Community EPIC confidential coin! Did you have any problems with the regulators? And there will be no problems with listing on centralized exchanges? Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash In terms of structure, we are carefully set up to minimize these concerns. Without a company or investors in the picture, and having raised no funds, there is little scope to attack in terms of securities laws. Bitcoin and Ethereum are widely acknowledged as acceptable, and we follow in their well-established footprints in that respect. Centralized exchanges already trade other privacy coins, so we don’t see this as much of an issue either. In general, decentralized p2p exchange options are more interesting than today’s centralized platforms. They are more censorship resistant, secure, and privacy-protecting. As the technology gets better, they should continue to gain market share and that’s why we’re proud to be partnered with Vitex, whose exchange and mobile app work very well. Cryptodiffer Community What are the main utility and real-life usage of the #EPIC As an investor, why should we invest in the #EPIC project as a long-term investment? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash Because our blockchain is so light (only 1.16gb currently, and grows very slowly) it is naturally well suited to become a decentralized mobile money standard because people can run a full node on their phone, guaranteeing the security of their funds. Scalability in Bitcoin requires complicated and compromised workarounds such as Lightning Network and light clients, and these problems are solved in Epic. With our forthcoming Mobile Mining app, hundreds of millions of cell phones and tablets will be able to easily join the network. People can quickly and cheaply send money to one another, fulfilling the long-envisioned promise of P2P electronic cash. As an investor, it’s important to ask a few key questions. Bitcoin Standard tokenomics of disinflation and a fixed supply are well proven over a decade now. We follow this model exactly, with a permanently synchronized supply from 2028, and 4 emission halvings from now until then, with our first one in about two weeks. Beyond that, we can apply some simple logical tests. What is more valuable, money that can only be used in some cases (censorable Bitcoin based on a lack of fungibility) or money that can be used universally? (fungible Epic based on always-on privacy by default). Epic is also poised to be a more decentralized and therefore resilient network because of wider participation in mining. Epic is designed to be Bitcoin++ Privacy, Fungibility, Scalability Cryptodiffer Community Q1. What are advantages for choosing three mining algorithms RandomX+, ProgPow and CuckAToo31+ ? Q2. Beam and Grin use MimbleWimble protocol, so what are difference for Epic? All of you will be friends for partners or competitors? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash RandomX and ProgPow are designed to use the entirety of a CPU / GPU’s unique processing capabilities in a way that other types of hardware don’t work as well. You can run RandomX on a GPU but it doesn’t work nearly as well as a much cheaper CPU, for example. Cuckoo is a “memory hard” algorithm that widens the range of companies that can produce the hardware. Grin and Beam are great projects and we’ve learned a lot from them. We inherited our first codebase from Grin’s excellent Rust design, which is a better language for community participation than C++ that Beam currently uses. Functionally, Mimblewimble is similar across the 3 coins, with standard Confidential Transactions, CoinJoin, Dandelion++, Schnorr Signatures and other advanced features. Grin is primarily ASIC-targeted, Beam is GPU-targeted, and Epic is multi-hardware. The biggest differences though are in tokenomics and project structure. Grin has permanent inflation of 60 coins per block with no halvings, which means steady erosion of value over time due to new supply pressure. It also lacks a steady funding model, making future development in jeopardy, particularly as the per coin price falls. Beam has a for-profit model with heavy early inflation and a high developer tax. Epic builds on the strengths of these earlier mimblewimble projects and addresses the parts that could be improved. Cryptodiffer Community Some privacy coin has scalability issues! How Epic cash will solve scalability issues? Why you choose randomX consensus algorithem? Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash Fungibility means that you can’t distinguish one unit of currency from another, in example Gold. Fungibility has recently become a hot issue as people have been noticing Bitcoins being locked up by exchanges which may of had a nefarious history which are called Tainted Coins. In example coins that have been involved in a hack, darknet market transactions, or even processing coin through a mixer. Today we can already see freshly mined Bitcoins being sold at a premium price to avoid the fungibility problem Bitcoin carries today. Bitcoin can be tracked by chainalysis and is not a fungible cryptocurrency. One of the features that Epic has is privacy with added fungibility, because of Mimblewimble technology, Epic has no addresses recorded and therefore nothing can be tracked by chainalysis. Below I provide a link of an example of what the lack of fungibility is resulting in today with Bitcoin. One of the reasons why we chose the Random X algo. is because of the easy barrier of entry and also to further decentralize the mining. Random X algo can be mined on old computers or laptops. We also have 2 other algos Progpow (GPU), and Cuckoo (ASIC) to create a wider decentralization of mining methods for Epic. Cryptodiffer Community I’m a newbie in crypto and blockchain so how will Epic Cash team target and educate people who don’t know about blockchain and crypto? What is the uniqueness of Epic Cash that cannot be found in other project that´s been released so far ? Yoga Dude Pr&Marketing at Epic Cash Actually, while we have our white paper translated into over 30 languages, we are more focused on explaining our uses and advantages rather than cold specs. Our tech is solid, but we not get hung up on pure tech talk which most casual users do not need to or care to understand. As long as our fundamentals and tech are secure and user friendly our primary goal is to educate about use cases and market potential. The uniqueness of Epic Cash is its amalgamation of “whats good” in other cryptos. We use Mimblewimble for privacy and anonymity. Our blockchain is much lighter than our competitors. We are the only Mimblewimble crypto to use a unique cocktail of mining algorithms allowing to be mined by casual miners with gaming rigs and laptops, while remaining friendly to GPU and CPU farmers. The “uniqueness” is learning from the mistakes of those who came before us, we evolved and learned, which is why our privacy is better, we are faster, we are fungible, we offer diverse mining and so on. We are the best blend — thats powerful and unique Cryptodiffer Community Can you share EPIC’s vision for decentralized finance (DEFI)? What features do EPIC have to support DEFI? Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash We view Epic as ideally suited to be the decentralized digital reserve asset of the new Private Internet of Money that’s emerging. At a technology level, atomic swaps can be created to build liquidity bridges so that wrapped Epic tokens (like WBTC, WETH) can trade on other networks as ERC20, BEP2, NEP5, VIP180, Algorand and so on. There is more Bitcoin value locked on Ethereum than in Lightning Network, so we will similarly integrate Epic so that it can trade on networks such as Uniswap, Kyber, and so on. Longer term, if there is market demand for it, thanks to Scriptless Script functionality our blockchain has, we can build “Confidential Assets” (which Raven, Tari, and Beam are all also working on) that enable people to create tokenized assets in a private way. Cryptodiffer Community If you could choose one celebrity to promote Epic-cash, who that would be? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash I am a firm believer that the strength of the project lies in allowing community members to become their own celebrities, if their content is good enough the community will propel them to celebrity status. Organic celebrities with small but loyal following are vastly more beneficial than big name professional shills with inflated but non caring audiences. I remember the early days of Apple when an enthusiastic dude named Guy Kawasaki became Apple Evangelist, he was literally going around stores that sold Apple and visited user groups and Evangelized his belief in Apple. This guy became a Legend and helped Apple become what it is today. Epic Cash will have its OWN Celebrities Cryptodiffer Community How does $EPIC solve scalability of transactions? Current blockchains face issues with scalability a lot, how does $EPIC creates a solution to it? Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash Epic Cash is utilizing Mimblewimble technology. Besides the privacy & fungibility aspect of the tech. There is the scalability features of it. It is implemented into Epic by transaction cut-through. Which means it allows nodes to remove all intermediate transactions, thus significantly reducing the blockchain size without affecting its validation. Mimblewimble also does not use addresses like a BTC address, and amount of transactions are also not recorded. One problem Monero and Bitcoin are facing now is scalability. It is evident today that data is getting more expensive and that will be a problem in the long run for those coins. Epic is 90% lighter and more scalable compared to Monero and Bitcoin. Cryptodiffer Community what are the ways that Epic Cash generates profits/revenue to maintain your project and what is its revenue model ? How can it make benefit win-win to both invester and your project ? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash There is a block subsidy of 7.77% that declines 1.11% per year until 0, where it stays after that. As a nonprofit community effort, this extremely modest amount goes much further than in other projects, which often take 20, 30, even 50+ % of the coin supply. We believe that this ongoing funding model best aligns the long term incentives for all participants and balances the compromises between the ends of the centralized/decentralized spectrum of choices that any project must make. Cryptodiffer Community Q1 : What are your major goals to archive in the next 3–4 years? Q2 : What are your plans to expand and gain more adoption? Yoga Dude Pr&Marketing at Epic Cash Max already talked about our technical plans and goals in his roadmap. Allow me to talk more about the non technical 😁 We are aiming for broader reach in the non technical more mainstream community — this is a big challenge but we believe it is doable. By offering simpler ways to mine Epic Cash (with smart phones for example), and by doing more education we will achieve the holy grail of crypto — moving past the fiat bridges and getting Epic Cash to be accepted as means of payment for goods and services. We will accomplish this by working with regional advocacy groups, community interaction, off-line promotional activities and diverse social media targeting. Cryptodiffer Community It seems to me that EpicCash will have its first Halving, right? Why a halving so soon? Is a mobile version feasible? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash Our supply emission catches up to that of Bitcoin’s first 19 years after 8 years in Epic, so that requires more frequent halvings. Today’s block emission is 16, next up are 8, 4, 2, and then finally 0.15625. After that, the supply of Epic and that of BTC stay synchronized until maxing out at 21m coins in 2140. Today we have a mobile wallet through the Vitex app, a native mobile wallet coming, and are working on mobile mining. Cryptodiffer Community What markets will you add after that? Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash Well, we are aiming to have ALL markets Epic Cash in its final iteration will be usable by everyone everywhere regardless of their technical expertise. We are not limiting ourselves to the technocrats, one of our main goals is to help the billions of unbanked. We want everyone to be able to mine, buy, and most of all USE Epic Cash — gamers, farmers, soccer moms, students, retirees, everyone really — even bankers (well once we defeat the banking industry) We will continue building on the multilingual diversity of our global community adding support and advocacy groups in more countries in more languages. Epic Cash is More than Money and its for Everyone. Cryptodiffer Community Almost, all cryptocurrencies are decentralized & no-one knows who owns that cryptocurrencies ! then also, why Privacy is needed? hats the advantages of Private coins? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash With a public transparent blockchain such as Bitcoin, you are permanently posting a detailed history of your money movements open for anyone to see (not just legitimate authorities, either!) — It would be considered crazy to post your credit card or bank statements to Twitter, but that’s what is happening every time you send a transaction that is not private. This excellent video from community contributor Spencer Lambert https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0blbfmvCq\_4 explains better than I can. Privacy is not just for criminals, it’s for everyone. Do you want your landlord to increase the rent when he sees that you get a raise? Your insurance company to raise your healthcare costs because they see you buying too much ice cream? If you’re a business, do you want your employees to see how much money their coworkers make? Do you want your competitors to trace your supplier and customer relationships? Of course not. By privacy being default for everyone, cryptocurrency can be used in a much wider range of situations without unacceptable compromises. Cryptodiffer Community What are the main utility and real-life usage of the #EPIC As an investor, why should we invest in the #EPIC project as a long-term investment? Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash Epic Cash can be used as a Private and Fungible store of value, medium of exchange, and unit of account. As Epic Cash grows and becomes adopted it can be compared to how Bitcoin and Monero is used and adopted as well. As Epic is adopted by the masses, it can be accepted as a medium of exchange for store owners and as fungible payments without the worry of having money that is tainted. Epic Cash as a store of value may be a good long term aspect of investment to consider. Epic Cash carries an inelastic fixed supply economic model of 21 million coins. There will be 5 halvings which this month of June will be our first halving of epic. From a block reward of 16 Epic reduced to 8. If we look at BTC’s price action and history of their halvings it has been proven and show that there has been an increase in value due to the scarcity and from halvings a reduction of # of BTC’s mined per block. An inelastic supply model like Bitcoin provides proof of the circulating supply compared to the total supply by the history of it’s Price action which is evident in long term charts since the birth of Bitcoin. EPIC Plans to have 5 halvings before the year 2028 to match the emissions of Bitcoin which we call the singularity event. Below is a chart displaying our halvings model approaching singularity. Once bitcoin and cryptocurrency becomes adopted mainstream, the fungibility problem will be more noticed by the general public. Privacy coins and the features of fungibility/scalability will most likely be sought over. Right now a majority of people believe that all cryptocurrency is fungible. However, that is not true. We can already see Chainalysis confirming that they can trace and track and even for other well-known privacy coins today such as Z-Cash. Cryptodiffer Community
You aim to reach support from a global community, what are your plans to get spanish speakers involved into Epic Cash? And emerging markets like the african
How am I secure I won’t be affected by receiving tainted money?
Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash Native speakers from our community are working to raise awareness in key markets such as mining in Argentina and Venezuela for Spanish (Roberto Navarro called Epic “the holy grail of cryptocurrency” and Ethiopia and certain North African countries that have the lowest electricity costs in the world. Remittances between USA and Latin American countries are expensive and slow, so Epic is also perfect for people to send money back home as well. Cryptodiffer Community Do EPICs in 2020 focus more on research and coding, or on sales and implementation? Yoga Dude PR&Marketing at Epic Cash We will definitely continue to work on research and coding, with emphasis on improved accessibility (especially via smartphones) usability, security and privacy. In terms of financial infrastructure will continuing to add exchanges both KYC and non KYC. Big part of our plans is in ongoing Marketing and PR outreach. The idea is to make Epic Cash a viral sensation of sorts. If we can get Epic Cash adopters to spread the word and tell their family, coworkers and friends about Epic Cash — there will be no stopping us and to help that happen we have a growing army of content creators, and supporters. Everyone with skin in the game gets the benefit of advancing the cause. Folks also, this isn’t an answer to the question but an example of a real-world Epic Cash content — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XtAVEqKGgqY a challenge from one of our content creators to beat his 21 pull ups and get 100 epics! This has not been claimed yet — people need to step up 🙂 and to help that I will match another 100 Epic Cash to the first person to beat this Cryptodiffer Community I was watching some videos explaining how to send and receive transactions in EpicCash, which consists of ports and sending links, my question is why this is so, which, for now, looks complex? Let’s talk about the economic model, can EpicCash comply with the concept of value reserve? Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash In V3, which is coming later this summer, Epic can be sent over Tor, which eliminates this issue of port opening, even though using tools like ngrok.io, it’s not necessarily as painful as directly configuring the router ports. Early Lightning Network had this issue as well and it’s something we have a plan to address via research into non-interactive transactions. “Fire and Forget” payments to an address, as people are used to in Bitcoin, is coming to Epic and we’re excited to develop functionality that other advanced mimblewimble coins don’t yet have. We are committed to constant improvement in usability and utility, to make our money system the ease of use leader. We are involved in the project (anyone can join the Freeman Family) because we believe that simply by choosing to use a form of money that better aligns with our ideals, that we can make a positive change in the world. Some of my thoughts about how I got involved are here: https://medium.com/epic-cash/the-freeman-family-e3b9c3b3f166 Max Freeman Project Lead at Epic Cash Huge thanks to our friends Maks and Vladyslav, we welcome everyone to come say hi at one of our friendly communities. It is extremely early in this journey, our market cap is only 0.5m right now, whereas the 3 other mimblewimble coins are at $20m, $30m and $100m respectively. Epic is a historic opportunity to follow in the footsteps of legends such as Bitcoin and Monero, and we hope to become the first Top 5 privacy coin project. Xenolink Advisor at Epic Cash Would like to Thank the Cryptodiffer Team and the Cryptodiffer community for hosting us and also engaging with us to learn more about Epic. If anyone else has more questions and wants to know more about EPIC , can find us at our telegram channel at https://t.me/EpicCash . Yoga Dude Pr&Marketing at Epic Cash Thank you, CryptoDiffer Team, and this wonderful Community!!! Cryptodiffer TEAM Thank you everyone for taking your time and asking great questions Thank you for your time, it was an insightful session Spread the love
Warning: Blockchain difficulty adjustment affecting price movement
Below are notable difficulty adjustments when hash rate fell and block times become slower for Bitcoin.
26 Mar 2020 [difficulty adjustment -15.95%, avg block time 11min 54secs]. On the 28th price crashed from $6674 to $6138 ( -8%).
8 Nov 2019 [difficulty adjustment -7.1%, avg block time 10min 46secs]. On the same day price crashed from $9234 to $8783 ( -4.88%).
The next big adjustment was around Nov to Dec 2018 and there were 3 big adjustments with high block times.
19 Dec 2018 [-9.56%, avg block time 11min 3secs]
3 Dec 2018 [-15.13%, avg block time 11min 47secs]
17 Nov 2018 [-7.39%, avg block time 10min 48secs]
There was huge drop off starting on 14th Nov all the way to a bottom on 14-15th Dec ($6351 to $3288 around -48%).
Current situation: We are 1 day 10 hours from the next difficulty adjustment. Projected difficulty adjustment is -5.61% (https://fork.lol/pow/retarget), which could indicate a small dip. However, take note that the date of last adjustment was the 5th and the 3rd halving was on the 11th, between the 5th to the 11th there was increased hashrate from miners trying to mine the final week of 12.5btc that offset the really slow block times after the halving. Therefore it will be the next difficulty adjustment after the one on the 20th that will completely reflect the slower block times after the halving. Currently the median block time taken on the 17th was around 14min (-28.5% difficulty adjustment). https://preview.redd.it/ysnv85wh0lz41.jpg?width=597&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=e130b077f9dc2fc9d02666ef89e6f9249a05f535 For people who do not understand blockchain, basically with the Bitcoin 3rd halving, mining profitability fell for a lot of miners and they probably turned off their miners therefore the blockchain mining time became considerably slower which is reflected with slow transaction speed and higher fees as seen currently. Bitcoin sellers moving their BTC from wallet to an exchange are faced with slow transaction speed and therefore the sell pressure of BTC fell considerably which will attribute to the current price increase. There is a correlation between sell pressure and blockchain congestion (the size of the correlation is undetermined). There is going to be a race. A race between BTC price hiking high enough to attract more miners to reduce avg block times versus the closing window of roughly 2 weeks before the next difficulty adjustment. If the price does not jump high enough, the next difficulty adjustment in the first week of June could signal a huge dip. I am not an expert. I just did some research on the above and wanted to share with fellow Bitcoin compatriots so that we can tread with caution and not lose our shirts. I do not plan to short BTC but I will exit my BTC positions if I expect double digit negative difficulty adjustment in early June. Bitcoin 2nd halving evidence: 2nd halving falls between the 5th and the 19th adjustment so it is only reflected on the 3rd of Aug difficulty adjustment ( -5.43%). See the dip on the 3rd of August. Price fell from $600 to $533 about 11% drop. Update 1:>! As of writing, I have opened a small short position on Bitcoin. Stop loss around 10k, estimated take profit around 8500. The reason is because the difficulty adjustment in the next 20 hours, even though is just -5% roughly is still significant. I direct you to look into all the difficulty adjustments in the last 2 years and you will know how rare it is. The ones I caught were all listed at the very top of the post. Since it is my first time shorting BTC, I take this as a learning opportunity so that I will have some experience to face the bigger difficulty adjustment in the first week of June. Analysis into execution, even in failure I am happy.!< Update 2: The difficulty adjustment (DA) happened roughly 6 hours ago and the sell pressure from -6% DA did not seem to be affecting the market much. However, please take a look now at the estimation for the next DA. On https://bitcoin.clarkmoody.com/dashboard/ it is estimated to be -25%. On https://fork.lol/pow/retarget estimated to be -18%. On https://www.blockchain.com/charts/median-confirmation-time the median block time for the last day was 16.8min. My original proposition that the true DA of the halving can only be realized in the next DA stands and that it will be considerable. The increased sell pressure from that DA will be highly significant. That is why there is a race by current miners to get the BTC price up high enough to attract more miners to not have the DA drop too much. References: Difficulty adjustment dates taken from https://btc.com/stats/diff Bitcoin graph history for price movement taken from coinmarketcap. Median confirmation time (block time) taken from https://www.blockchain.com/charts/median-confirmation-time Credits to people who assisted the analysis: kairepaire for pointing out faster block times between 5th-11th. babies_eater for https://fork.lol/pow/retarget moes_tavern_wifi for https://bitcoin.clarkmoody.com/dashboard/ Pantamis for https://diff.cryptothis.com/
On the cusp of block subsidy halving, which will on the surface significantly reduce miner revenue (assuming Bitcoin price doesn't go up proportionate to halving in the near future and fees remain at current levels).
Making blocks smaller would make block space more scarce thus causing fees to rise (and compensate for lower block subsidy), while at the same time allow the blockchain to grow at a slower pace and allow household users to (continue to) run full nodes on existing hardware without having to upgrade or abandon the network.
Bull Bitcoin’s Dollar-Cost Averaging tool for Canadians: a detailed overview
Hello fellow Canadian Bitcoiners! I'm Francis Pouliot, CEO and founder of Bull Bitcoin (previously known as Bitcoin Outlet) and Bylls. I haven't been active on Reddit for a while but I thought I'd pop back here to let the community know about our new dollar-cost averaging feature, "Recurring Buy" This post is a copy of my most recent medium article which you can read here if you want to see the screenshots. https://medium.com/bull-bitcoin/bull-bitcoins-dollar-cost-averaging-tool-for-canadians-the-right-time-to-buy-bitcoin-is-every-day-82a992ca22c1 Thanks in advance for any feedback and suggestions! [Post starts here] The Bull Bitcoin team is constantly trying to reduce the frictions ordinary people face when investing in Bitcoin and propose innovative features which ensure our users follow Bitcoin best practices and minimize their risks. We are particularly excited and proud about our latest feature: an automated Bitcoin dollar-cost averaging tool which we dubbed “Recurring Buy”. The Recurring Buy feature lets Bull Bitcoin users create an automated schedule that will buy Bitcoin every day using the funds in their account balance and send the Bitcoin directly to their Bitcoin wallet straight away. We put a lot of thought in the implementation details and striking the right trade-offs for a simple and elegant solution. Our hope is that it will become a standard other Bitcoin exchanges will emulate for the benefit of their users. This standard will certainly evolve over time as we accumulate feedback and operational experience. In this article, I cover: The problem that we are trying to solve Recurring Buy feature details, processes and instructions The rationale (and tradeoffs) behind the main feature design choices Bull Bitcoin is only available to Canadians, but non-Canadians that wish to have a look at how it works are welcome to make a Bull Bitcoin account and check out how it works here. You will be able to go through the process of create the schedule for testing purposes, but you wont be able to fund your account and actually purchase Bitcoin. What problems does Dollar-Cost Averaging solve? The most common concern of Bitcoin investors is, not surprisingly, “when is the right time to buy Bitcoin?”. Bitcoin is indeed a very volatile asset. A quick glance at a Bitcoin price chart shows there are without a doubt “worse times” and “better times” to invest in Bitcoin. But is that the same as the “right” time? Gurus, analysts and journalists continuously offer their theories explaining what affects the Bitcoin price, supported by fancy trading charts and geopolitical analysis, further reinforcing the false notion that it is possible to predict the price of Bitcoin. Newbies are constantly bombarded with mainstream media headlines of spectacular gains and devastating losses. For some, this grows into an irresistible temptation to get rich quick. Others become crippled with the fear of becoming “the sucker” on which early adopters dump their bags. Veterans are haunted by past Bitcoin purchases which were quickly followed by a crash in the price. “I should have waited to buy the dip…” Many Bitcoin veterans and long-term investors often shrug off the question of when is the right time to buy with the philosophy: “just hodl”. But even those holding until their death will recognize that buying more Bitcoin for the same price is a better outcome. Given the very high daily volatility of Bitcoin, a hodler can find himself in many years having significantly less wealth just because he once bought Bitcoin on a Monday instead of a Wednesday. His options are either to leave it up to chance or make an attempt to “time the market” and “buy the dip”, which can turn into a stressful trading obsession, irrational decisions (which have a negative impact on budget, income and expenses) and severe psychological trauma. In addition, trying to “buy the dip” is often synonymous to keeping large amounts of fiat on an exchange to be ready for “when the time comes”. There must be a better way. Bitcoin investors should be rewarded for having understood Bitcoin’s long-term value proposition early on, for having taken the risk to invest accordingly and for having followed best practices. Not for being lucky. Overview of features and rules In this section I go into every detail of the Recurring Buy feature. In the following section, I focus on explaining why we chose this particular user experience. The user first decides his target investment amount. Ideally, this is a monthly budget or yearly budget he allocates to investing in Bitcoin based on his projected income and expenses. The user then chooses either the duration of the Recurring Buy schedule or the daily purchase amount. The longer the better. The frequency is each day and cannot be modified. The user must submit a Bitcoin address before activating a Recurring Buy schedule. By default, every transaction will be sent to that Bitcoin address. It’s the fallback address in case they don’t provide multiple addresses later. Once the user has filled the form with target amount, the duration and the Bitcoin address, he can activate the Recurring Buy Schedule. The user is not required to already have funds in his account balance to activate the schedule. We will randomly select a time of day at which his transaction will be processed (every hour, so 24 possible times). If the user insists on another time of day, he can cancel his Recurring Buy schedule and try again. ￼ ￼ The Recurring Buy feature as displayed on bullbitcoin.com/recurring-buys The schedule is then displayed to the user, showing the time and date at which transactions that will take place in the future. The user will be able to see how long his current balance will last. He can follow the progress of the dollar-cost averaging schedule, monitor in real time his average acquisition cost, and audit each transaction individually. At this point, the user can and should change the Bitcoin address of his next transactions to avoid address re-use. Address re-use is not forbidden, but it is highly discouraged. After having modified the Bitcoin addresses, there is nothing left for the user to do except watch the bitcoins appear in his Bitcoin wallet every day! The Bitcoins are sent right away at the time of purchase. Bitcoin transactions using the Recurring Buy feature will have the lowest possible Bitcoin network transaction fee to avoid creating upwards pressure on the fee market impact other network users. ￼ ￼ What users see after first activating a schedule The Recurring Buy schedule will be cancelled automatically at the time of the next purchase if the balance is insufficient. He can add more funds to his balance whenever he wants. The Recurring Buy schedule will continue until the target amount is reached or until the account balance runs out. The user can cancel his Recurring Buy schedule whenever he wants. If the user wants to change the amount or duration of the schedule, he can simply cancel his current schedule and create a new one. Each schedule has a unique identifier so that users can keep track of various schedules they perform over time. Once a schedule is completed, either fully or partially, a summary will be provided which shows the number of transactions completed, the average acquisition cost, the total amount of Bitcoin purchase and the total amount of fiat spent. Useful for accounting! ￼ ￼ A partially completed Recurring Buy schedule cancelled after 9 days due to insufficient funds Though process in making our design choices Recurring Bitcoin Purchases vs. Recurring Payment/Funding The first and most important design choice was to separate the processes of funding the account balance with fiat (the payment) from the process of buying Bitcoin (the purchase). Users do not need to make a bank transaction every time they do a Bitcoin purchase. They first fund their account manually on their own terms, and the recurring purchases are debited from their pre-funded account balance. Another approach would have been to automatically withdraw fiat from the user’s bank account (e.g. a direct debit or subscription billing) for each transaction (like our friends at Amber) or to instruct the user to set-up recurring payments to Bull Bitcoin from their bank account (like our friends at Bittr). The downside of these strategies is that they require numerous bank transactions which increases transaction fees and the likelihood of triggering fraud and compliance flags at the user’s bank. However, this does remove the user’s need to keep larger amounts of fiat on the exchange and reduces the friction of having to make manual bank payments. Bull Bitcoin is currently working on a separate “Recurring Funding” feature that will automatically debit fiat from the user’s bank accounts using a separate recurring schedule with a minimum frequency of once a week, with a target of once every two weeks or once a month to match the user’s income frequency. This can, and will, be used in combination from the “Recurring Buy” feature, but both can be used separately. The ultimate experience that we wish to achieve is that users will automatically set aside, each paycheck (two weeks), a small budget to invest in Bitcoin using the “Recurring Funding” feature which is sufficient to refill their account balance for the next two weeks of daily recurring purchases. Frequency of transactions The second important decision was about customizing the frequency of the schedule. We decided to make it “each day” only. This is specifically to ensure users have a large enough sample size and remain consistent which are the two key components to a successful dollar-cost averaging strategy. A higher amount of recurring transactions (larger sample size) will result in the user’s average acquisition being closer to the actual average Bitcoin price over that period of time. Weekly or monthly recurring purchases can provide the same effectiveness if they are performed over a duration of time which is 7x longer (weekly) or 30x longer (monthly). It is our belief that the longer the duration of the schedule, the more likely the user is to cancel the recurring buy schedule in order to “buy the dip”. Dollar-cost averaging is boring, and watching sats appear in the wallet every day is a good way to reduce the temptation of breaking the consistency. We do not force this on users: they can still cancel the schedule if they want and go all-in. We consider it more of a gentle nudge in the right direction. Frequency of withdrawals (one purchase = one bitcoin transaction) This is one of the most interesting design choices because it is a trade-off between scalability (costs), privacy and custody. Ultimately, we decided that trust-minimization (no custody) and privacy were the most important at the expense of long-term scalability and costs. Realistically, Bitcoin network fees are currently low and we expect them to remain low for the near future, although they will certainly increase massively over the long-term. One of the ways we mitigated this problem was to select the smallest possible transaction fee for transactions done in the context of Recurring Buy, separate from regular transaction fees on regular Bitcoin purchases (which, at Bull Bitcoin, are very generous). Note: users must merge their UTXOs periodically to avoid being stuck with a large amount of small UTXOs in the future when fees become more expensive. This is what makes me most uncomfortable about our solution. I hope to also solve this problem, but it is ultimately something Bitcoin wallets need to address as well. Perhaps an automated tool in Bitcoin wallets which merges UTXOs periodically when the fees are low? Food for thought. When transaction fees and scalability becomes a problem for us, it will have become a problem for all other small payments on the Bitcoin network, and we will use whatever solution is most appropriate at that time. It is possible that Lightning Network ends up being the scalability solution, although currently it is logistically very difficult to perform automated payouts to users using Lightning, particularly recurring payouts, which require users to create Bolt11 invoices and to convince other peers in the network to open channels and fund channels with them for inbound capacity. These are the general trade-offs: Send a Bitcoin transaction for every purchase (what we do) - Most expensive for the exchange - Most expensive for the user (many UTXOs) - Increases Bitcoin Network UTXOs set - Inefficient usage of block space - Most private - Zero custody risk Keep custody of the Bitcoin until the schedule is over or when the user requests a withdrawal (what Coinbase does) - No additional costs -No blockchain bloating - Same level of privacy - High custody risk Batch user transactions together at fixed intervals (e.g. every day) - Slightly lower transaction costs for the exchange - Same costs for the user - Slightly more efficient use of block space - Same level of UTXO set bloating - Much lower level of privacy - Slightly higher custody risk Single address vs multiple addresses vs HD keys (xpubs) The final decision we had to make was preventing address re-use and allowing users to provide an HD key (xpub) rather than a Bitcoin address. Address re-use generally decreases privacy because it becomes possible for third-party blockchain snoops to figure out that multiple Bitcoin transactions are going to the same user. But we must also consider that even transactions are sent to multiple addresses, particularly if they are small amounts, it is highly likely that the user will “merge” the coins into a single transaction when spending from his wallet. It is always possible for users to prevent this using Coinjoin, in which there is a large privacy gain in not re-using addresses compared to using a single address. It is important to note that this does not decrease privacy compared to regular Bitcoin purchases on Bull Bitcoin outside of “Recurring Buy”. Whether a user has one transaction of $1000 going to a Bitcoin address or 10x$100 going that same Bitcoin address doesn’t reveal any new information about the user other than the fact he is likely using a dollar-cost averaging mechanism. It is rather a missed opportunity to gain more privacy. Another smaller decision was whether or not we should ask the user to provide all his addresses upfront before being able to activate the schedule, which would completely remove the possibility of address re-use. We ultimately decided that because this process can take a very long time (imagine doing Recurring Buy every day for 365 days) it is better to let the user do this at his own pace, particularly because he may eventually change his Bitcoin wallet and forget to change the addresses in the schedule. There are also various legitimate use-cases where users have no choice but to re-use the same address . A discussion for another day! Asking the user to provide an XPUB is a great solution to address re-use. The exchange must dynamically derive a new Bitcoin address for the user at each transaction, which is not really a technical challenge. As far as I can tell, Bittr is the only Bitcoin exchange exchange which has implemented this technique. Kudos! It is however important that the user doesn’t reuse this XPUB for anything else, otherwise the exchange can track his entire wallet balance and transaction history. It is worth noting that not all wallets support HD keys or have HD keys by default (e.g. Bitcoin Core). So it is imperative that we offer the option to give Bitcoin addresses. We believe there is a lot of potential to create wallet coordination mechanisms between senders and recipients which would make this process a lot more streamlined. In the future, we will certainly allow users to submit an XPUB instead of having to manually input a different address. But for now, we wanted to reduce the complexity to a minimum. Conclusion: personal thoughts I have a somewhat unique perspective on Bitcoin users due to the fact that I worked at the Bitcoin Embassy for almost 4 years. During this time, I had the opportunity to discuss face-to-face with thousands of Bitcoin investors. One of my favourite anecdotes is a nocoiner showing up at our office in December 2013 with a bag full of cash attempting to buy Bitcoin, “I know how to read a chart”, furious after being turned away. Many people who went “all-in” for short-term gains (usually altcoins) would show up to the Bitcoin Embassy office months later with heart-breaking stories. This isn’t what I signed up for. My goal is to help people opt-out of fiat and, ultimately, to destroy the fiat currency system entirely. This instilled in me a deep-rooted concern for gambling addiction and strong aversion to “trading”. I do not believe that Bitcoin exchanges should blindly follow “what the market dictates”. More often than not, what dictates the market is bad habits users formed because of the other Bitcoin services they used in the past, what other people are used to, and what feels familiar. Running a Bitcoin company should be inseparable from educating users on the best practices, and embedding these best practices into the user experience is the best way for them to learn. Another important anecdote which motivated me to build a dollar-cost averaging tool is a person very close to me that had made the decision to buy Bitcoin, but was so stressed out about when was the right time to buy that they ended up not buying Bitcoin for a whole 6 months after funding their Bull Bitcoin account. That person eventually gave up and ultimately invested a large amount all at once. In hindsight, it turned out to be one of the worst possible times to invest in Bitcoin during that year. Investing in Bitcoin can, and should be, a positive and rewarding experience. Buying Bitcoin every day is the right strategy, but it is not necessarily lead to the best outcome. The reality is that the best time to buy Bitcoin is at when market hits rock bottom (obviously). Sometimes, the upside from buying the dip can be much bigger than the risk (e.g. when the price dropped below $200 in 2015). But these are exceptions rather than the rule. And the cost of chasing dips is very high: stress, investing time and mental energy, and the very real psychological trauma which results from making bad trading decisions. Ultimately, it’s better to do the right thing than being lucky, but it’s not always a bad idea to cheat on your dollar-cost averaging from time to time if you can live with the costs and consequences. Yours truly, Francis
Decred is insanely undervalued - A Confluence of Blockchain mechanics and Raw Scarcity
Decred has caught a burst of long overdue wind today. Below is my thesis on recent price action drivers and why I think Decred is insanely undervalued right now from an on-chain/blockchain mechanics perspective. This is an expansion on a tweet I put out here https://twitter.com/_Checkmatey_/status/1190349477120552961 Fundamentally, the project is one of the most undervalued assets in the market and I believe the largest information asymmetry next to Bitcoin. The smart money know this. They have been accumulating. Looking at the volume of DCR moving on-chain, we can see a significant amount of DCR moving in 2019 at the current support range. We know that DCR is always on the move due to tickets so when we see high volume nodes like this, it supports the notion of actual accumulation in addition to the usual transaction flow. We have seen similar growth in the median and mean transaction sizes throughout 2019. Larger wallets, larger DCR purchases. Update: Note how the 2019 volume node, if just looking at USD chart could be attributed to Dec-Apr period or the recent drawdown. However looking against the BTC chart confirms that the dominant accumulation has occurred during the recent period as the BTC price probes the lows. This is what I consider a high volume zone of support characterised by a large transfer of coins (miners selling, accumulating buyers). On-chain DCR volume profile plotted against price for BTC (black) and USD (blue) The recent price action drawdown in my opinion is a result of Miners going too hard to fast. ASICs were introduced in early 2018 and we see an explosion in PoW Difficulty. Mining is a leveraged play for DCR and in this case is unlike what occurred for BTC in that it was almost four years until ASICs were on the scene for Bitcoin. This means that Bitcoins naturally high early inflation had time to disperse before ASICs and serious hardware investment came online. ASICs are capital intensive, not hobbyist grade meaning coins mined must necessarily become coins sold. We can compare the insane growth in Decred mining since Jan 2018 against the market to see this on a relative scale. Mind you, this is a bullish signal. Miners are committing heavy capital to the Decred chain security. They have done their due diligence and have high conviction. That is not something to ignore. Full tweet on this here https://twitter.com/_Checkmatey_/status/1177650799050133504 Normalised difficulty growth (left) since Jan 2018 and (right) 2019 Year to Date As miners over-extend without support of price appreciation, they must sell more coins to pay bills. Eventually the weak miners have to capitulate and difficulty ribbon squeezes as mining equipment is switched off. We have seen this play out for Bitcoin where squeezing of the difficulty ribbon indicates a valuable period for accumulation. Willy Woo talks about this here https://woobull.com/introducing-the-difficulty-ribbon-the-best-times-to-buy-bitcoin/. What happens next is that the strong miners gain an increasing share of the hashrate. Their energy is thus rewarded with more DCR and so they can sell less of their income and Hodl more. This effectively begins to constrain supply rather than the oversaturation during capitulation. Over time this leads to a reversal in price action which further perpetuates the effect. Price of a scarce asset must appreciate with reduced circulating supply assuming demand relatively remains stable or increases. Decred total cumulative block subsidy paid (price x block reward DCR) and Difficulty ribbon This is actually very healthy forDecred. Coins are being distributed by miners en-mass right now, nullifying the risk of miners holding too high of a supply within the staking system leading to centralisation. I would argue that this distribution of coins is one of the most important and bullish signals long term. We know that miners stake as well and thus they are able to generate income on Hodled coins. I expect this to actually soften the degree of miner capitulation as they can turn off power whilst still generating income. For this reason, I do not suspect we will see photos of mountains of Decred ASICs being thrown out as we saw for Bitcoin in 2018. The machines are simply put on hold until price reverses to justify power consumption. This is a valuable business feasibility case for miners and a feature of long term sustainability in the chain security. Decred Resilience This is where the elegance of Decred resilience steps in. As miners slow, supply saturates, price drops. DCR Tickets become cheaper. Stakeholders step in and accumulation begins. The Ticket Price hit an ATH of 140+ DCR as Stakeholders begin accumulating and commit capital to secure the chain. The Hybrid PoW/PoS system works as a counter balance. When price is in a strong uptrend, stakeholders are provided an exit to capitalise on gains as miners have a strong case for expanding their operations (PoW dominant security). During price drawdowns, miners drop out and the cheap DCR stimulates Hodlers buying and locking capital which locks down available supply from attackers. An attack would thus drive price higher and the cycle repeats. As above, showing the total DCR locked in tickets hits an ATH as price drops due to miner capitulation PermabullNino made the observation that Decred functions as an elegant yet robust accounting system. His discussion on block subsidies are shown in the charts above and linked here https://medium.com/@permabullnino/decred-on-chain-a-look-at-block-subsidies-6f5180932c9b.Decred has a has past, present and future cash flows distributed to those who support it most. This puts Decred security in good hands- Miners 60%- Stakeholders 30%- Builders 10% Price is currently hovering around the PoW total subsidy paid (red line) and means miners are indeed feeling the squeeze as this is the cost basis of all DCR paid to date. Once you factor in overheads and capital costs, it makes sense we are seeing DCR supply distribution. The last time we saw price dip to this line was early in Decreds history and was followed by a rapid repricing. We now have three mechanisms at play which will act to constrain supply
Miners are distributing heavily but eventually will switch to hodling as the strong miners hash share grows.
Stakeholder are absorbing supply en mass and locking in tickets due to relatively cheap prices
Inflation rate is in a state of constant reduction
Scarcity My recent work looking at the Decred stock-to-flow model (which does exist and is convincing, contrary to what the Bitcoin maxi community may want to believe), suggests that DCR is in the oversold range. It has deviated by 1.5 standard deviations from the S2F model mean which is near identical to Bitcoin at 50% supply mined. Historically for Bitcoin and Decred, this has been an opportune period for accumulation. More on this discussion in my tweet here https://twitter.com/_Checkmatey_/status/1184159137564889089 Note that Decred, likely due to the smooth issuance and difference in market awareness, is less volatile than Bitcoin. The significant undervaluation of Bitcoin at 50% mined was due to the first 2012 halving where it was a very different and far smaller market. I would expect DCR to be repriced sooner rather than later as the smart money steps in having now developed Bitcoin hindsight. Standard deviations of DCR and BTC price from the respective stock-to-flow linear regression models As a final note, if we look at Decred and Bitcoin market valuations plotted against ratio of 21M coins issued, which normalises for coin age, we see a fascinating similarity in these coins trajectory. Bitcoin was worth $127M at 50% coins mined and Decred was worth $180M. Considering we are in a log scale market, this is practically the same. Decred has achieved this value both benefiting from market awareness and size, but also in the face of heavy (albeit generally ill-equipped) alt-coin competition, quite remarkable. Decred and Bitcoin Market and Realised Caps and S2F models plotted against ratio of 21M coins mined Given that Decred has such insanely strong fundamentals, has developed a convincing monetary premium in it's short life and traverses the same stock-to-flow path as Bitcoin, I believe there is immense value flying under the markets radar. The recent price action drawdown can reasonably be attributed to miners over-extending. However based on both prior Decred behaviour and drawing comparisons to Bitcoin history, there is a strong argument to be made that supply will soon be constrained on multiple fronts and the current value is both highly undervalued and being absorbed by the smart money. Feedback, counter-points and discussions welcome. Cheers, CM.
BTC Fees amplified today by last night's difficulty adjustment. Current (peak of day) next-block fees are testing new highs.
Compounding Factors Causing the Fee Explosion Over the past 2 weeks, a large sum of SHA256 hashpower has come online as the rewards for mining in real-dollar value had been increasing. The increase over the past 2016 blocks was so great in fact that it caused an 11% jump in difficulty last night. To add to that, the price retreated back to the 2-week average meaning some hashpower has left after the price adjustment. You can see how far behind schedule the current block times are here. That has compounded to set new highs in sat/byte fees and has simultaneously escalated the price per transaction drastically While BTC blocks may be able to clear overnight when mining is running 10-20% above the expected block rate, it's pretty clear from history that every day has a peak usage that cannot be handled by the network. After readjustment, it looks like only the lull of the weekend can currently clear the backlog, and only just. I recommend checking Johoe's Mempool size in MB graph for a longer span. In the 3 month graph, you can really start to see each daily spike, weeks where the mempool only cleared on the weekend, and even a couple of weekends where the mempool didn't clear. So What is Each Blockchain Currently Capable Of? Current Segwit usage has been stagnant at around 40-45% for the past year now, but let's just say for argument's sake that segwit usage hits 100%. This represents a capacity increase of the BTC blockchain of only around 25%. That means that even if BTC hit perfect segwit usage, it could only handle around 500k transactions per day instead of 400k. This bottleneck does not exist on BCH. BCH can currently handle 16M blocks with no issue as proved by last year's stress-test and it should now be able to handle full 32MB blocks given recent parallelization improvements. The throughput of even 16MB blocks would allow for somewhere around an 8M TX/day average. Bitcoin Cash is absolutely equipped to deal with an order of magnitude more transactions than Bitcoin today while maintaining 1sat/byte fees. Blockchain technology can do so much more than BTC gives it credit for.
Bitcoin Reaches New All-Time High Hash Rate Just A Week Before Halving
Some Crypto Analysts Consider The Increased Hash Rate To Affect Bitcoin’s Price Positively, As “Price Follows Hashrate” The largest cryptocurrency to date, Bitcoin, is preparing for its third halving, scheduled at block 690,000, or around May 14. Meanwhile, Bitcoin miners are putting even greater push for validating transactions, which is often referred to as a bullish sign. The amount of computer power needed to validate a transaction on Bitcoin’s blockchain peaked with a new all-time high on May 3. Crypto speculators consider the halving event as a catalyst for Bitcoin’s price to explode in the months after the reward cut. Crypto analysis company Glassnode posted a chart on Twitter, marking the bullish exponential curve of hashrate activity. Traders and enthusiasts, who believe in the “price follows hashrate” maxima quickly showed their enthusiasm about the peak. Max Keiser, for example, shared a chart from Bitcoin.com, showing his bullish stance on the future price of Bitcoin. Source: Glassnode The correlation between Bitcoin’s price and the hashrate is still not confirmed, but there are some historical hints that such correlation may exist. However, if Bitcoin’s price increases, miners get a bigger reward for mining a block. The price increase leads to more miners joining the race, which increases hashrate as well. For instance, in September 2018, just moments before the crypto winter, Bitcoin’s network had 56 ExHash-per-second (EH/s) with price per one BTC roughly at $6,500. During the following three months, Bitcoin’s network hashrate fell to as low as 31 EH/s, with a price per BTC around the $4,000 mark. However, the thesis that more miners are entering the computing pool when Bitcoin is approaching its halving may not be entirely accurate. The halving procedure cuts down the reward per mined block in half. Small and mid-sized miners and mining farms may be forced to shut down operations, as they might not clear their costs for operating the rigs. Some experts believe the hashrate push could be a last “attack” towards making a profit before the reward cut. Meanwhile, other crypto experts consider the spike to be because of the possible price increase anticipation. The CFO of Boston Trading Co. Jeremy Britton explained that with the increasing scarcity for mining precious metals (like Gold, for example), its price increases. The same principle may be applied for Bitcoin, also. “When Bitcoin’s price crashed in 2019, its price did not drop below $3,000, because miners didn’t want to sell on loss. The expenses for mining a single block on Bitcoin’s network are around $3,000, without considering the costs for equipment and the Internet”, Britton stated. The next halving, scheduled for May 14, would further increase the costs per mining a BTC block. “The next possible floor for Bitcoin’s price is around $6,000 because miners won’t agree to sell on loss”, Britton concluded. Pricewise, Bitcoin failed to overcome and settle above $9,000, as the weekend rally broke above the psychological barrier, but was quickly corrected to trade at $8,719.97 currently. The hashrate peak, however, pushed trading volumes up from May 3 with over $8 billion.
Note, bitcoin by its nature is poorly compressible, as it contains a lot of incompressible data, such as public keys, addresses, and signatures. However, there's also a lot of redundant information in there, e.g. the transaction version, and it's usually the same opcodes, locktime, sequence number etc. over and over again. I was curious and thought, how much could we actually compress the blockchain? This is actually very relevant: As I established in my previous post about the costs of a 1GB full node, the storage and bandwidth costs seem to be one of the biggest bottlenecks, and that CPU computation costs are actually the cheapest part, as were able almost to get away with ten year old CPUs. Let's have a quick look at the transaction format and see what we can do. I'll have a TL;DR at the end if you don't care about how I came up with those numbers. Before we just in, don't forget that I'll be streaming today again building a SPV node, as I've already posted about here. Last time we made some big progress, I think! Check it out here https://dlive.tv/TobiOnTheRoad. It'll start at around 15:00 UTC!
Version (32 bits)
There's currently two transaction types. Unless we add new ones, we can compress it to 1 bit (0 = version 1; and 1 = version 2).
Input/output count (8 to 72 bits)
This is the number of inputs the transaction has (see section 9 of the whitepaper). If the number of inputs is below 253, it will take 1 byte, and otherwise 2 to 8 bytes. This nice chart shows that, currently, 90% of Bitcoin transactions only have 2 inputs, sometimes 3. A byte can represent 256 different numbers. Having this as the lowest granularity for input count seems quite wasteful! Also, 0 inputs is never allowed in Bitcoin Cash. If we represent one input with 00₂, two inputs with 01₂, three inputs with 10₂ and everything else with 11₂ + current format, we get away with only 2 bits more than 90% of the time. Outputs are slightly higher, 3 or less 90% of the time, but the same encoding works fine.
Input (>320 bits)
There can be multiple of those. It has the following format:
Previous output (288 bits): This specifies which output is being spent by this input. It's the transaction hash (32 bytes), plus the output index within that transaction (4 bytes).The transaction hash is usually a random number. How can we compress that? Well, we already know this transaction and its hash. If it's part of the blockchain, we can uniquely identify it by its block (via blockheight) and its position in that block. We'll list all transaction outputs of the block by whatever order is present for that block (TTOCTOR), and then encode the position of the output in that list. For the blockheight, we can use 4 bytes, which will allow 4 billion blocks (83,781 years) and for the transaction output we can either use 4 bytes (max. 430GB big blocks) or more, but we can use 1 bit as a flag once blocks get really large.So in total, this will be 8 bytes, or 64 bits. If transactions aren't in the blockchain yet but in the mempool, we can use something similar Xthinner uses by encoding only the prefix required to uniquely identify the transaction. But I haven't thought that through yet.
Signature script (≥ 8 bits): As most scripts have a standardized format, we don't have to put the whole script into the input every time. Say there's seven standard formats, then we'd use 3 bits for the format. If all bits are set, the transaction will continue to be serialized in a standard way. The most common transaction type is Pay-To-Public-Key-Hash, which requires a signature and a public key. The signature currently uses the DER format, which can currently be up to 73 bytes, but just actually stores two 32 byte numbers, which can actually be represented with 512 bits. The public key can be compressed to 257 bits, plus 1 to specify if it's compressed in the original transaction. Makes 258 bits.
Sequence (32 bits): For almost all programs, this is FF FF FF FF. We can use 1 bit to determine if it's that number (0), and encode the sequence number ordinarily if not (1).
So in total that 838 bits per P2PKH input, or about 105 bytes.
Output (≥72 bits)
There can be multiple of those. They have the following format:
Value in satoshis (64 bits): Currently, the first 13 bits of this amount will always be 0 (as there's a maximum of 21M BCH), but there's efforts to allow sub-satoshi values in Bitcoin, so we can't rely on that. Also, most of the time, transactions will send much less than 21,000,000 BCH, or even 21 BCH. Therefore, if we encode the sent value separately, we can use integer compression schemes, as outlined in this paper, which achieves between 6 and 16 bits per 32 bit integer (see Table 4, p. 21). I think it's save to assume we can get away with 16 bits if we implement that scheme here.
Public key script (≥8 bits): Here, we can use the same trick as with the input, by having 3 bits for the format. For Pay-To-Public-Hash transactions, we only need 20 bytes or 160 bits for the address.
So in total that is 179 bits per P2PKH output.
Lock time (32 bits)
This is FF FF FF FF most of the time and only occasionally transactions will be time-locked, and only change the meaning if a sequence number for an input is not FF FF FF FF. We can do the same trick as with the sequence number, such that most of the time, this will be just 1 bit.
Interestingly, if we take a compression of 69%, if we were to compress the 165 GB blockchain, we'd get 113.8GB. Which is (almost) exactly the amount which 7zip was able to give us given ultra compression! I think there's not a lot we can do to compress the transaction further, even if we only transmit public keys, signatures and addresses, we'd at minimum have 930 bits, which would still only be at 61% compression ratio (and missing outpoint and value). 7zip is probably also able to utilize re-using of addresses/public keys if someone sends to/from the same address multiple times, which we haven't explored here; but it's generally discouraged to send to the same address multiple times anyway so I didn't explore that. We'd still have signatures clocking in at 512 bits. Note that the compression scheme I outlined here operates on a per transaction or per block basis (if we compress transacted satoshis per block), unlike 7zip, which compresses per blockchain. I hope this was an interesting read. I expected the compression ratio to be higher, but still, if it takes 3 weeks to sync uncompressed, it'll take just 2 weeks compressed. Which can mean a lot for a business, actually.
I'll be streaming again today!
As I've already posted about here, I will stream about building an SPV node in Python again. It'll start at 15:00 UTC. Last time we made some big progress, I think! We were able to connect to my Bitcoin ABC node and send/receive our first version message. I'll do a nice recap of what we've done in that time, as there haven't been many present last time. And then we'll receive our first headers and then transactions! Check it out here: https://dlive.tv/TobiOnTheRoad.
Charts: Determining the Ideal Block Size for Bitcoin What’s the ideal block size? CoinDesk contributor Willy Woo analyzes the charts for answers in his latest opinion piece. Average Block Size (MB) Average Transactions Per Block. Total Number of Transactions. Median Confirmation Time . Average Confirmation Time. Mining Information. Network Activity. Wallet Activity. Market Signals. Sponsored Content. Blockchain Size (MB) The total size of the blockchain minus database indexes in megabytes. 30 Days 60 Days 180 Days 1 Year 3 Years All Time. Raw Values 7 Day Average ... Block Size Growth Remains Organic. A Bitcoin block has a variable size, though relatively small blocks usually propagate. There is no target or limitation, and the Bitcoin network has not set out to deliberately distribute large blocks. The record for BTC was purely organic, achieving a mean block size of 1.312 MBs. Charts providing a snapshot of the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) ecosystem Moreover, the site monitors the current state of the Bitcoin network and the block propagation time. Also, it provides charts with historical data on this subject. ADVERTISEMENT. The majority of well-established blockchain networks have the same design as Bitcoin. As a result, the block propagation time in these networks obeys the same rules. Unfortunately, the block propagation time has a ...
What is Bitcoin? Bitcoin Explained Simply for Dummies ...
Bitcoin's halving (block reward) is fast approaching, and we examine the recently increases hash rate metrics. Oobit Releases A Coinbase-Powered “Skyscanner” For Bitcoin. Singapore-based Oobit ... Get our free Bitcoin course here - https://chrisdunn.com/free-bitcoin-course This Bitcoin basics video series will explain Bitcoin for beginners. You'll lear... Whether the block size should be increased to 20MB has created more controversy than any other question in Bitcoin's recent history. For some, it is an urgent and necessary step in Bitcoin's ... Here's just a quick overview of some of my thoughts on Bitcoin today. Nothing too interesting has happened currently, but we're awaiting some confirmation on breaches of upwards price levels as ... Bitcoin's protocol schedules a block reward 'halving' roughly every four years, as designed by Satoshi Nakamoto. But the artificial block size cap currently sanctioned by Core developers and a ...